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Conservation status: Amber

As its name suggests, redshanks' most distinctive features are their bright orange-red legs. They have a medium-length bill with an orange base to match, brown speckled back and wings and paler belly.

Illustrations

Overview

Latin name

Tringa totanus

Family

Sandpipers and allies (Scolopacidae)

Where to see them

Redshanks breed in damp places like saltmarshes, flood meadows and around lakes, but during winter you'll see lots more of them on estuaries and coastal lagoons – as many as half of these birds may be from Iceland. The greatest concentrations of breeding birds are in parts of Scotland and north-west England.

When to see them

At any time of year.

What they eat

Redshanks hunt for insects, earthworms, molluscs and crustaceans by probing their bills into soil and mud.

Population

EuropeUK breeding*UK wintering*UK passage*
-25,000 pairs130,000 birds-

Distribution

Key

Audio

Ruud van Beusekom, Xeno-canto