The Hudsonian Godwits, Limosa haemastica, is a large shorebird.
Adults have long dark legs and a long pink bill with a slight upward curve and dark at the tip. The upper parts are mottled brown and the underparts are chestnut. The tail is black and the rump is white. They show black wing linings in flight.
Breeding and Nesting
Their breeding habitat is the far north near the tree line in northwestern Canada and Alaska, also on the shores of Hudson Bay. They nest on the ground, in a well-concealed location in a marshy area. The female usually lays 4 eggs. Both parents look after the young birds, who find their own food and are able to fly within a month of birth.
They migrate to South America. Hudsonian Godwits, birds gather at James Bay before fall migration. In good weather, many birds make the trip south without stopping.
They can perhaps be most easily seen in migration on the east coast of North America at a place called South Beach in Chatham, MA where they can be plentiful in migration. Late July through early August appears to be the most plentiful time for the bird there and can be seen in the tens (usually a few individuals) to a hundred (rare) at a time.
These birds forage by probing in shallow water. They mainly eat insects and crustaceans.
Their numbers were reduced by hunting at the end of the 19th century.
- BirdLife International (2004). Limosa haemastica. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. Retrieved on 11 May 2006. Database entry includes justification for why this species is of least concern
- Hudsonian Godwit –Limosa haemastica – USGS Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter
- Hudsonian Godwit Species Account – Cornell Lab of Ornithology
- Hudsonian Godwit Information and Photos – South Dakota Birds and Birding
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