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Senegal Thick-knee, Burhinus senegalensis


Senegal Thick-knee

The Senegal Thick-knees, Burhinus senegalensis, is a Stone-curlew, a group of waders in the family Burhinidae.


Distribution / Range

It is a resident breeder in Africa between the Sahara and the equator, and in the Nile valley.

This species has a preference for dry open habitats with some bare ground, preferably near water.



Senegal Thick-knees are medium-large waders with strong black and yellow black bills, large yellow eyes—which give them a reptilian appearance— and cryptic plumage. The scientific name refers to the prominent joints in the long yellow or greenish legs.

They are similar but slightly smaller than the Stone Curlew, which winters in Africa. The long dark bill, single black bar on the folded wing, and darker cheek stripe are distinctions from the European species.

The Senegal Thick-knee is striking in flight, with a broad white wing bar.


Breeding / Nesting

It lays two blotchy light brown eggs on a ground scrape. It is most active at dawn and dusk.


Song / Vocalizations

The song is a loud pi-pi-pi-pi-pi-pi-pi.


Diet / Feeding

Food is insects, crustaceans and other invertebrates. It will also take other small prey.


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