Upright Perching Water Birds

American Avocet

Recurvirostra americana
American Avocet thumbnail
Length: 18 in. (46 cm )
A noisy and obvious resident of inland marshes, mud flats and ocean estuaries, the American Avocet uses its long legs and peculiarly upturned bill to stir up aquatic invertebrates underwater. Often nesting together with other pairs of avocets in a loose colony, they are all quick to fly over the heads of intruders and dive bomb them with loud callings. It commonly swims when the water is too deep to wade in. The nest is a shallow depression near water in sand or gravel and often in the shade of an isolated bush. The adults have orangish heads and necks in the breeding season that become whitish for the rest of the year.

The four-digit banding code is AMAV.

Male | Jim Burns


Open water
Bird Sound Type: Chirping
Sex of Bird: Male
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Bibliographic details:

  • Article: American Avocet
  • Author(s): Dr. Biology
  • Publisher: Arizona State University School of Life Sciences Ask A Biologist
  • Site name: ASU - Ask A Biologist
  • Date published: July 13, 2017
  • Date accessed: September 21, 2023
  • Link: https://askabiologist.asu.edu/activities/bird/american-avocet

APA Style

Dr. Biology. (2017, July 13). American Avocet. ASU - Ask A Biologist. Retrieved September 21, 2023 from https://askabiologist.asu.edu/activities/bird/american-avocet

American Psychological Association. For more info, see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/10/

Chicago Manual of Style

Dr. Biology. "American Avocet". ASU - Ask A Biologist. 13 July, 2017. https://askabiologist.asu.edu/activities/bird/american-avocet

MLA 2017 Style

Dr. Biology. "American Avocet". ASU - Ask A Biologist. 13 Jul 2017. ASU - Ask A Biologist, Web. 21 Sep 2023. https://askabiologist.asu.edu/activities/bird/american-avocet

Modern Language Association, 7th Ed. For more info, see http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/08/
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