Eurasian Curlew

Numenius arquata




Sandpipers, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Dark olive with brown marks

Number of Eggs:


Incubation Days:

27 - 29

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

On ground in wet fields or marshes with tussocks.

Nest Material:






Eurasian Curlew: Large curlew with strongly marked underparts that lack rich orange or buff tones that other long billed curlews often show. Unique among curlews in showing prominent white back and rump in flight and wing underwing linings. Sexes similar. Juvenile is very similar to adult but underparts not as strongly marked.

Range and Habitat

Eurasian Curlew: This species breeds in wet fields, forest edges, and marshes across Europe and northern Asia. It winters on marine mudflats along all the coasts of Europe, Africa, and Asia. Very rarely this bird may appear along Atlantic coast of North America from Newfoundland south to Massachusetts during fall and winter.

Breeding and Nesting

Eurasian Curlew: Nest built on ground among grasses or tussocks with male making several crude scrapes and female picking one to line with fine grasses. Lays four brown marked, dark olive eggs that are incubated by both parents for 27 to 29 days. Newly hatched chicks are feed by both parents, but can soon feed themselves. First flight in just over a month.

Foraging and Feeding

Eurasian Curlew: Feeds by probing with long bill into soil, mud, or sand. Eats a variety of insects, larvae, and crustaceans. Feeds in wet meadows, forest edges, and marshes during the breeding season, but shifts to coastal marine mudflats during nonbreeding season and gathers in large flocks.


Eurasian Curlew: Loud rising "cur-li cur-li cur-li."

Similar Species

Eurasian Curlew: Long-billed Curlew has rather plain orange underparts, orange wing linings, and heavily marked rump.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

The area between the uppertail coverts and the back of the bird.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X