Large curlew

large curlew
Großer Brachvogel (Numenius arquata)
large curlew (Numenius arquata)
Subclass: Neukiefervögel (Neognathae)
order: Regenpfeiferartige (Charadriiformes)
family: Schnepfenvögel (Scolopacidae)
kind: Curlews (Numenius)
kind: Large curlew
scientific name
Numenius arquata
Linnaeus, 1758

the large curlew (Numenius arquata), is bird a kind from the family of the Schnepfenvögel (Scolopacidae).

Table of contents


the large curlew is about 50 to 60 cm long and weighs between 600 and 1000 gram. The wingspan amounts to 80 to 100 cm. The birds are the largest wading birds, and they are in Europe the most frequent curlews. The female is somewhat larger than the male, otherwise the sexes look equal: they are rather unscheibar beige-brown speckled and have a white Bürzel, which becomes visible in the flight. By their long, downward curved bill they are almost unmistakable.

The voice is a loud pain-courageous call, which sounds as “klüiii”. In order to mark the breeding districts, the males sing in the spring one seam-end and trillernde Strophe.


large curlews eat insects, worms and snails, which look for it with their long bill on the soil stochernd. The bill serves also as tweezers, in order to get snails and shells from their bowls.


large curlews breed in moorlands and damp meadows as well as in open marches and river valleys. In the winter they live at the coasts and in the Watt, in addition in the inland on fields and damp meadows. You mainspreading-offered are north and Central Europe as well as the British islands. In the winter the birds pull to the coasts in west and south Europe.

breeding care

the nest is a flat hollow on the soil, which is expenditure-padded with grass. The clutch of eggs consists of four eggs.

Meyers 1888/90

the large B. (Field, Doppelschnepfe, breaking chicken, rain bird, Geissvogel, thunderstorm bird, N. arquatus L.), 75cm long, 125cm broad, oberseits brown with rust-yellow edges of feather/spring, at the vertex rust-yellow also black-brown marks, at the Unterrücken white and as at the rust-yellowish Unterkörper brown längsgefleckt, rockers black and white, tax feathers/springs white, black-brown gebändert; the eye is dark-brown, the bill black, the foot grey. He is through-traveled in the north of Europe, Asia and America, in the winters Africa and India, goes in April through Germany, returns to at the end of of July and pulls in September south. It lives at the coast and at inland waters, visited also fields and the driest country, is very informal, shy, carefully and watchful, so that gladly many less intelligent beach birds meet around it. It goes with large steps, wades, swims and flies skillfully, eats notching animals, shells, crustaceans, fish, Amphibians, also to berries and breeds mainly in the tundra, isolated also in Northern Germany. The nest stands in the Moos or Riedgras and contains four oil-green, dark grey and brown gefleckte eggs (S. Board of “eggs II”, Fig. 10), which are expenditure-bred by both parents. Meat and eggs are tasty and are searched. It can be zahmen easily and keeps themselves good in the shank.

The large curlew was bird of the yearly 1982.

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