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Bird name:

Dunlin

Calidris alpina

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Sandpipers (Scolopacidae)

BTO 2

DN

BTO 5

DUNLI

Euring 5

05120
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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

UK Conservation Status


Red Status

European Conservation Status


Conservation Description


In the UK, Isle of Man, and Ireland, the Dunlin breeds in upland areas and winters in coastal habitats. It has an "Amber" status because of recent declines in its population.

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BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Dunlin: Compact shorebird with slightly downcurved bill. Upperparts orange-brown with black spotting and streaking. Underparts white with fine black streaking on face and breast, and black on the belly. Medium length, short, black legs. White wing stripe shows in fast, direct flight.


Range and Habitat

Dunlin: Migrant breeder and visitor. Summer breeding grounds are located in upland areas of the UK and Ireland, and extend into the Northern Isles. Winter grounds include the entire UK coastline, with flocks found on every estuary. Fields, heath, and moors provide breeding habitat.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"cheezp", "kreeep", "treezp"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Dunlin moves along coastal mudflats with a unique "sewing machine" feeding action, methodically picking small food items.
  • Those breeding in northern Alaska apparently move west, migrating down the eastern side of Siberia and Asia to Japan and China.
  • Flocks are often huge, and are most impressive when they display their coordinated aerial maneuvers trying to escape predation by Peregrine Falcons and Merlins.
  • A group of dunlin has many collective nouns, including a "flight", "fling", and "trip" of dunlin.

RELATED BIRDS

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FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Michael Oberhofer

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX

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

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
BellyX
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
4 and 6 letter alpha codesX

The four letter common name alpha code is is derived from the first two letters of the common first name and the first two letters of common last name. The six letter species name alpha code is derived from the first three letters of the scientific name (genus) and the first three letters of the scientific name (species). See (1) below for the rules used to create the codes..

Four-letter (for English common names) and six-letter (for scientific names) species alpha codes were developed by Pyle and DeSante (2003, North American Bird-Bander 28:64-79) to reflect A.O.U. taxonomy and nomenclature (A.O.U. 1998) as modified by Supplements 42 (Auk 117:847-858, 2000) and 43 (Auk 119:897-906, 2002). The list has been updated by Pyle and DeSante to reflect changes reported by the A.O.U from 2003 through 2006.

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ITIS CodesX

The Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) was established in the mid-1990 s as a cooperative project among several federal agencies to improve and expand upon taxonomic data (known as the NODC Taxonomic Code) maintained by the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

To find the ITIS page for a bird species go to the ITIS web site advanced search and report page at http://www.itis.gov/advanced_search.html. You can enter the TSN or the common name of the bird. It will return the ITIS page for that bird. Another way to obtain the ITIS page is to use the Google search engine. Enter the string ITIS followed by the taxonomic ID, for example "ITIS 178041" will return the page for the Allen's Hummingbird.

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Parts of a Standing birdX
Head Feathers and MarkingsX
Parts of a Flying birdX