General Description

Heavily-built wader with long, slightly upturned bill. Head and neck white, streaked with brown, grey and black (darker in breeding birds). Underside white; dark markings on upper breast and sides. Legs pale grey-green. In flight, upperwing dark and underwing white with faint brown barring. Larger than the similar Marsh Sandpiper. Length up to 35 cm; wingspan to 65 cm.


Found near edges of wetlands. Associates with other waders, especially the Marsh Sandpiper. Active, wary, excitable and noisy. Feeds on molluscs, crustaceans, insects and occasionally small fish and frogs. Feeds by picking, probing, sweeping and lunging; movements are often erratic, changing direction and dashing after small fish.


Around Australia.


Inland wetlands and sheltered coastal areas, including mudflats, saltmarshes, river estuaries, deltas and lagoons.

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