The four species of Avocets are waders in the same bird family as the stilts and are found in warm or hot climates.
They have long legs and long, thin, upcurved bills. They use their bills to sweep from side to side when feeding in the brackish or saline wetlands for aquatic insects and other small creatures. The plumage is pied, sometimes also with some red.
The avocets have webbed feet and swim readily.
They nest on the ground in loose colonies.
The four species, all in the genus Recurvirostra are:
- Pied Avocet, Recurvirostra avosetta
- American Avocet, Recurvirostra americana
- Red-necked Avocet, Recurvirostra novaehollandiae
- Andean Avocet, Recurvirostra andina
PHOTO CAPTION: Red-necked Avocet (Recurvirostra novaehollandiae)