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Black-winged Stilt | Birds And Me

Black-winged Stilt


Black-winged Stilt

Scientific Name:  Himantopus himantopus

Black-winged Stilt image

Black-winged Stilt  Photo by:  Admin

Bird Type:  Waders    1098  Views


The Black-winged Stilt is a black and white shorebird, perched on very long and fine pink legs, giving the bird an elegant gait. The adult male in breeding plumage has black and white plumage with all-black wings and upper back with greenish iridescence. Underparts are white, sometimes with pale pinkish wash on the breast. Head shows white face and forehead, and black top of the crown. Eyes are red. The long, thin bill is black and straight. Very long legs and feet are reddish-pink. The female in breeding plumage is almost similar but more brownish on the upperparts with sometimes greyish wash on nape and rear neck. In winter plumage, both are similar to the breeding female but duller, with variable grey wash on head and rear neck. The juvenile is paler than adult, with washed grey-brown crown and rear neck. The brownish upperparts show narrow pale buff fringes, and legs are duller.


  • 35-40 cm

  • 14-16 Inch

  • black

  • white  (Bird may have more colors)
  •    কালোপাখ ঠেঙ্গি
  •    Échasse blanche
  •    ગજપાંવ
  •    പവിഴക്കാലി
  •    शेकाट्या, पाणटिलवा, ढांगाळ्या
  •    प्रवालपाद
  •    நெடுங்கால் உள்ளான்

The Black-winged Stilt lives mainly in freshwater and saltwater marshes and mudflats, shallow lakes, coastal lagoons, flooded fields and rice fields.


The diet of these black-winged stilt species is mostly aquatic invertebrates. Fish, crustaceans, aquatic and terrestrial insects, molluscs, spiders, oligochaete and polychaete worms and amphibian are their primary food.
These black-winged stilt species feed by picking the prey from the surface of the water as well as by immersing the head to probe the shallow waters for prey. They also forage in short vegetation for small prey and seeds.


The Black-winged Stilt’s calls are a sharp kek and a barking ke-yak. Alarm call is a monotonous, high-pitched kik-kik-kik-kik-kik-kik. They are noisy on their breeding areas.


The black-winged stilt (Himantopus himantopus) is a widely distributed very long-legged wader in the avocet and stilt family (Recurvirostridae). The scientific name H. himantopus was formerly applied to a single, almost cosmopolitan species. It is now normally applied to the form that is widespread in Eurasia and Africa and which was formerly regarded as the nominate subspecies of Himantopus himantopus sensu lato. The scientific name Himantopus comes from the Greek meaning "strap foot" or "thong foot"Most sources today accept 2–4 species. It is sometimes called pied stilt, but that name is now reserved for the Australian species, Himantopus leucocephalus. <br>Adults are 33–36 cm (13–14 in) long. They have long pink legs, a long thin black bill and are blackish above and white below, with a white head and neck with a varying amount of black. Males have a black back, often with greenish gloss. Females' backs have a brown hue, contrasting with the black remiges. In the populations that have the top of the head normally white at least in winter, females tend to have less black on head and neck all year round, while males often have much black, particularly in summer. This difference is not clear-cut, however, and males usually get all-white heads in winter.<br>Immature birds are grey instead of black and have a markedly sandy hue on the wings, with light feather fringes appearing as a whitish line in flight.

    Resident (inc. local and altitudinal migrants)
    Former range (no recent records but may still survive)
    Summer visitor (including summer monsoon)
    Winter visitor
    Passage (autumn and/or spring) visitor
    known to be occasional, scarce or erratic
    Small isolated population (actual range smaller)  
    Isolated record(s) - one or more in the same area  
 colour coded for seasonality as per coloured ranges, black denotes unspecified season



Location:, Jodiya, Gujarat

Photo by:  Admin