Check out the latest Long-billed Curlew videos from the 2017 field season!
Before migration, curlews will begin to form flocks. Females generally leave the breeding grounds first, followed by males (who stay longer than females to tend to chicks), and then juveniles. The curlews featured in this video from the City of Boise's 20 Mile South Farm, are the first wave (females), staging for migration by foraging to build their fuel supplies. June 6th, 2017. Video by Stephanie Coates.
In this video by Madeline Voshell (of IBO's 2017 Curlew Crew), we see a fuzzy, but good example of a female curlew building a nest. Nest-building usually starts with the male scraping the dirt with his feet to form a small rounded cup. He will do this at many places on the territory, and the female seems to make the final choice on nest cup location. They both add small pieces of dry grass and vegetation, and sometimes other debris to the scrape, flicking it into their nest cups with their bills. When we see females grass-tossing, this is usually a very good indication that the pair will nest in that spot.
One way to tell if a curlew has chicks is by their protective behavior. Here, Erica Gaeta films a short clip of the "welcome" she received from a curlew parent on TNC's Flat Ranch, before getting out of dodge! (June 2015)
May the 4th be with you! The ACEC is heating up and we've started capturing curlews for transmitter attachment and genetic samples at the ACEC near Middleton, Idaho. Here's a super-awesome video by Ben Wright of a Long-billed Curlew bill-flexing (aka rhynchokinesis)!
Kevin Coates and Mikki Brinkmeyer caught a curlew pair in the act! Well, an attempt at least. After a while the female appears to decide she's had enough of him stomping around up there and darts away. One of our higher elevation sites, Daniel Wyoming (and every other study site besides the ACEC), got a fresh blanket of snow last weekend. 25 April 2015.
Heather Hayes captured this courtship behavior of a pair of curlews as they weave between cattle and ground squirrels on the ACEC (our southwestern Idaho site). Seems the curlews might have even woken a napping calf! 23 April 2015
Footage filmed by Hattie Inman on April 21, 2015 from our eastern Idaho site. Henrietta (one of IBO's flock) and her mate showcase some typical curlew-style courtship, with the male stroking the female's back-feathers.