Recurvirostra avosetta   Linnaeus,  1758 (Bird)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Aves

Image copyrights: Pbase

Size: 42-45 cm.

Voice: High-pitched klooit, kweet-kweet.

Habits: Generally occurs in pairs or small parties though flocks of about 100 birds may be found, nests in colonies, runs about on mudflats and feeds by sweeping bill from side to side on water surface or mud, swims like dabbling duck.

Adult: Sexes alike. An unmistakable marsh bird with conspicuously upcurved long black bill, dark red iris, glistening white body, black head, hind neck and two wing-bands, and bluish-grey legs. In winter, the tail is greyish, the long secondaries more grey and less black.

Nesting: Season- It breeds from April to August in large colonies, at the only known breeding place within Indian limits, the Great Rann of Kutch- April. Eggs- 4, closely resembling those of both the Stilt and the Redwattled Lapwing in shape, color and markings. Laid on bare sunbaked ground, on the surface or in a shallow depression. Colony of many nests a few yards from one another.

Synonym (s)

Common Name (s)
• Avocet (English)
• Pied Avocet (English)
• Kusya chaha (Hindi)
• Eurasian Avocet (English)
• Ulti-chanch (Gujrati)
• Uchat (Marathi)
• Kuni arichan (Malayalam)
• Avocet (Malayalam)
Economic Importance and Threats
Threats:  Anthropogenic
(The species is threatened in Europe by the pollution of wetlands with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), insecticides, selenium, lead and mercury. Important wintering sites (e.g. in Portugal or the Yellow Sea) are also threatened by infrastructure development, land reclamation, pollution, human disturbance and reduced river flows.)
Threats:  Natural threats
(The species is susceptible to avian botulism and avian influenza so may be threatened by future outbreaks of these diseases.)

Habitat:  Estuarine, Sandy, Muddy, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Consumer
Prey:  Carnivorous, comprising small molluscs, crustaceans and insects.
IUCN Status:  Least Concern


• Maharashtra INDIA
• Punjab (Lat: 31.16) (Long: 75.34) INDIA
• Uttar Pradesh (Lat: 27.63) (Long: 80.09) INDIA
• Bihar (Lat: 26.11) (Long: 85.28) INDIA
• Orissa INDIA
• Assam (Lat: 26.21) (Long: 92.93) INDIA
• Manipur (Lat: 24.68) (Long: 93.90) INDIA
• Andaman & Nicobar Islands INDIA
• Gujarat, Gulf of Kachchh (Lat: 22.6) (Long: 69.5) INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Pichavaram INDIA (Record: 08/1986 - 07/1987)
• Orissa, Bhitarkanika INDIA
• Orissa, Chilika Lake INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Point Calimere (Lat: 10.3) (Long: 79.85) INDIA
• Delhi, Okhla barrage bird sanctuary INDIA
• Kerala, Kol wetlands (Lat: 10.33) (Long: 75.96) INDIA
• Andhra Pradesh, Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary INDIA
• Haryana, Kurukshetra INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Pulicat Lake (Lat: 13.67) (Long: 80.17) INDIA
• Gujarat, Bet Dwarka INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Subba Rao, NV and Sastry, DRK (2005) Fauna of Marine National Park, Gulf of Kuchchh (Gujarat) ZSI 79 pp Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Abbaasi, SA (1997) Wetlands of India-Ecology and Threats Discovery Publishing House,New Delhi II 1-182 Available at - NIO, RC Kochi
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • (2003) IUCN Red list of threatened species Available at -
  • Kumar, A; Sati, JP; Tak, PC and Alfred, JRB (2005) Handbook on Indian wetland birds and their conservation Zoological Survey of India, Dehra Dun 468 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Ali, S (1977) The book of Indian birds Bombay Natural History Society 175 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • PBase Available at -
  • Sampath, K and Krishnamurthy, K (1990) Shorebirds (Charadriiformes) of the Pichavaram Mangroves, Tamil Nadu, India Wader Study Group Bulletin 58 24-27 Available at -
  • (1997) Coastal marine environment of Gujarat 178pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • European environmental agency Available at -
  • Manakadan R and Pittie A (2001) Standardized English names of the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent BUCEROS Envis Newsletter: Avian ecology and inland wetland 6(1) 26pp Available at -
  • Kumar A, sati JP and Tak CK (2003) Checklist of Indian Waterbids Buceros Envis Newsletter: Avian ecology and inland wetlands 8(1) 30pp Available at -
  • Vernacular names of the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent Buceros, Envis newsletter: Avian Ecology & Inland Wetlands 62pp Available at -
  • Myers, P; Espinosa, R; Parr, CS; Jones, T; Hammond, GS and Dewey, TA (2006) Animal diversity web Available at -
  • Nayak, A.K. (2006) Status of migratory shorebirds at Bhitarkanika and Chilika wetlands on the east coast of India Waterbirds around the world. Eds. G.C. Boere, C.A. Galbraith & D.A. Stroud The Stationery Office, Edinburgh, UK 305-307pp Available at -
  • Balachandran, S (2006) The decline in wader populations along the east coast of India with special reference to Point Calimere, south-east India. Waterbirds around the world. Eds. G.C. Boere, C.A. Galbraith & D.A. Stroud The Stationery Office, Edinburgh, UK. 296-301pp Available at -
  • Urfi AJ (2003) The birds of Okhla barrage bird sanctuary, Delhi, India Forktail 19 39-50pp Available at -
  • Sivaperuman C and Jayson EA (2000) Birds of Kol wetland, Thrissur, Kerala Zoo's print journal 15(10) 344-349pp Available at -
  • Rao VV, Anjaneyulu M, Nagulu V, Srinivasulu C and Satyanarayana D (2004) Water fowl Status at Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary, Andhra Pradesh EPTRI - ENVIS Newsletter 10(4) 7-12pp Available at -,%20No.4,%202004.pdf
  • Gupta RC, Kaushik TK and Gupta PK (2012) WINTER MIGRATORY WETLAND BIRDS IN HARYANA ARE CONFRONTING ADVERSE CONDITIONS IN RURAL PONDS Resulting in reduction in arrival number: A case study of village Amin in Thanesar block in Kurukshetra district Indian Journal of Fundamental and Applied Life Sciences 2 (1) 7pp Available at -
  • Urfi AJ (2002) Waders and other wetland birds on Byet Dwarka Island, Gulf of Kutch, western India Wader Study Group Bull. 31-34 Available at -
  • Gopi GV and Pandav B (2007) Avifauna of Bhitarkanika Mangroves, India Zoo's print journal 22(10) 2839-2847pp Available at -
  • Ali S and Ripley SD (1969) Handbook of the birds of India and Pakistan Oxford university press 2 1-337pp Available at - NIO

Page last updated on:2013-01-30

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