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The Common Redshank or simply Redshank (Tringa totanus), called Rödbena in Skåne, is a Eurasian wader in the large family Scolopacidae. The genus name Tringa is the New Latin name given to the Green Sandpiper by Aldrovandus in 1599 based on Ancient Greek trungas, a thrush-sized, white-rumped, tail-bobbing wading bird mentioned by Aristotle. The specific totanus is from Tótano, the Italian name for this bird.
Range map from www.oiseaux.net - Ornithological Portal Oiseaux.net
www.oiseaux.net is one of those MUST visit pages if you're in to bird watching. You can find just about everything there
Description and systematics
Common Redshanks in breeding plumage are a marbled brown color, slightly lighter below. In winter plumage they become somewhat lighter-toned and less patterned, being rather plain greyish-brown above and whitish below. They have red legs and a black-tipped red bill, and show white up the back and on the wings in flight.
The spotted Redshank (T. erythropus), which breeds in the Arctic, has a longer bill and legs; it is almost entirely black in breeding plumage and very pale in winter. It is not a particularly close relative of the Common Redshank, but rather belongs to a high-latitude lineage of largish shanks. T. totanus on the other hand is closely related to the marsh sandpiper (T. stagnatilis), and closer still to the small wood sandpiper (T. glareola).
The ancestors of the latter and the Common Redshank seem to have diverged around the Miocene-Pliocene boundary, about 5–6 million years ago. These three subarctic- to temperate-region species form a group of smallish shanks with have red or yellowish legs, and in breeding plumage are generally a subdued light brown above with some darker mottling, and have somewhat diffuse small brownish spots on the breast and neck.
Noon breeding plumage on the left hand side
Breeding plumage on the right hand side
Common Redshank standing on a rock giving what I think is an alarm calls. I approached and the bird continued with the alarm call but the bird didn´t move.
So I sneaked closer and closer to the bird that continued to give alarm calls. I looked around so it didn´t looked like there was a nest close by.
And in the North of Finland they have babies so I guess the nesting sesson should be over here down south.
But maybe they are having a second brood, but no sign of any nest and I moved closer.
Several subspecies have been identified. These include:
• T. t. robusta - (Schiøler, 1919): found in Iceland and the Faroe Islands.
• T. t. ussuriensis - Buturlin, 1934: found in southern Siberia, Mongolia and east Asia
• T. t. terrignotae - Meinertzhagen, R. & Meinertzhagen, A., 1926: found in southern Manchuria and eastern China
• T. t. craggi - Hale, 1971: found in north west China
• T. t. eurhina - (Oberholser, 1900): found in Tajikistan, north India and Tibet
Eggs, Collection Museum Wiesbaden
By Klaus Rassinger und Gerhard Cammerer, Museum Wiesbaden - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
The Common Redshank is a widespread breeding bird across temperate Eurasia. It is a migratory species, wintering on coasts around the Mediterranean, on the Atlantic coast of Europe from Ireland and Great Britain southwards, and in South Asia. They are uncommon vagrants outside these areas; on Palau in Micronesia for example, the species was recorded in the mid-1970s and in 2000.
They are wary and noisy birds which will alert everything else with their loud piping call. Like most waders, they feed on small invertebrates. Redshanks will nest in any wetland, from damp meadows to saltmarsh, often at high densities. They lay 3–5 eggs.
The Common Redshank is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.
It is widely distributed and quite plentiful in some regions, and thus not considered a threatened species by the IUCN.