Galapagos Whimbrel Birds

The Whimbrel, also known as Numenius phaeopus, is a wader of the large family Scolopacidae. It is one of the most common curlews and breeds across most of subarctic North America. It migrates along the coast. Outside of the breeding season, the Whimbrel can be quite gregarious. It breeds in Arctic Tundra. It can be found in many habitats during migration, including sandy beaches, mudflats, and salt marshes. 

The whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus), is a large, long-legged shorebird with a decurved bill. Birds in ColoradoIt is a member of the Scolopacidae family, which breeds in Alaska, Canada, and Greenland.

The whimbrel is a migratory bird that winters along the coasts of South and North America. It tends to flock together and concentrates in large groups. The bird’s name, “Whimbrel”, is a loose translation of its call. It was named after England.


The whimbrel, a large bird, is approximately 37-47cm (15-19in) long, 75-90cm (30-35in) wide, and weighs 270-493g (9.5-24.7 oz; 0.595-1.187 lb). The whimbrel is mostly greyish-mottled-brown and has a long, curved bill. The adult female whimbrel’s bill is longer and more curved than the male’s.Whimbrel-in-flight (1)

The distinctive head pattern of the whimbrel is dark-and-light alternating stripes. Its color is consistent from season to season, and it can fly brown with a white belly. It has a solid black bill in summer and a pinkish-reddish base in winter. The narrow, dark eyes of Whimbrel birds are also characteristic. The Whimbrel bird has a long neck, and its wings are short and pointed.


The diet of the whimbrel includes insects, crustaceans, and berries. Their long bills are used to dig into the mudflats and wet sand for small invertebrates like crabs. The shape of the Whimbrel’s bill is similar to the curve of the crab’s burrow. A whimbrel will wash a crab to remove any mud or remove the largest claw before it is eaten.

The berries that were left over from previous summers are what whimbrels consume on breeding grounds. Arizona Birds  These berries then become an important part of their diet when they move. The year is filled with whimbrels eating spiders, grasshoppers, and flies.

Whimbrel birds protect their territories in wintering areas and during migratory stopovers. They will defend themselves against any other whimbrels that get too close.

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