Black-winged Stilt

Himantopus himantopus




Avocets and Stilts (Recurvirostridae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Yellow or buff blotched with black or brown.

Number of Eggs:

4, 4

Incubation Days:

22 - 24

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

On ground.

Nest Material:

Lined with stems, weeds, sticks, grasses, fragments of shells, small rocks, fish bones, and rubbish.





Black-winged Stilt: Large, tall, slender wading bird with a long black bill. Sexes are similar; black above and white below with a white head, nape, and breast. The female has a tinge of brown on its back. Adults have a red eye-color, long legs ranging from light to dark pink, and can have a dark terminal tail band. This stilt is a sub-species of the Black-necked Stilt. Feeds on worms, aquatic insects, fish, and mollusks. Swift direct flight with shallow wing beats.

Breeding and Nesting

Black-winged Stilt: Breeding and nesting season is from December to August. These stilts build nests in shallow depressions on small mounds, often in low-lying vegetation near the water. The nest is lined with rocks and twigs. The female usually lays four eggs which are well camouflaged. She aggressively defends the nest. The eggs incubate for 24 to 26 days.

Foraging and Feeding

Black-winged: These wading birds often gather in groups. They make a chirping sound similar to kip, kip or keek, keek. They use their long beaks to probe the shallow water in mud flats for food such as worms, aquatic insects, crabs, fish, and mollusks. They trap fish by concentrating them in shallow water. They also cluster to feed around delivery pipes carrying water runoff from fields.


Black-winged Stilt: Vocal species. Typical call resembles "kek kek kek," but when excited, species produces "ki-ki-ki-ki-ki" call. When alarmed, call is drawn-out into "keyaa."

Similar Species

Black-winged Stilt: Unlikely to be confused with any other species in this range.

The upper front part of a bird.
Also called the hindneck or collar, it is the back of the neck where the head joins the body.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X