Birds of North America Home Page

Field Guide for all the Birds of North America


Courlis corlieu

Numenius phaeopus

Lives, Habitats & Pictures of the Dowitchers

Information, images and range maps on over 1,000 birds of North America, including sub-species, vagrants, introduced birds and possibilities


There are two races of the Whimbrel, that are most obvious to identify. The Whimbrel (American) is seen throughout the North American continent at some point during the calendar year. This large shorebird is a member of the curlew family. It has fared better than most other curlew species in the world, because curlews in general, have suffered extinction. These birds were hunted for sport and food.

The Whimbrel (Eurasian), is another race or sub-species that is found throughout Eurasia. These shorebirds are not as common as the Whimbrel seen in North America. This race can be separated from the North American race by a very noticeable white rump, which can be observed when the bird is in flight.

The Whimbrel breeds on the tundras in both continents. These birds can be found on the top of treeless hills, where they nest in flocks. The tundra is ideal for these shorebirds, where they are able to locate their food in the wet and soggy soils during the spring and summer months.

Click on the bird names listed below to see images of possible Whimbrel

References to Other Bird Sites:

Avibase - the world bird database This site provides the user with a complete list of bird species, broken down per country, or in the example of the US or Canada, per state and province. Here, bird species names are available in other languages, a great asset to be used as a translation of foreign bird names.

ABA - American Birding Association This site represents an organization that maintains official records of all birds species that have been proven to have been seen inside the perimeters of the North American Continent and the surrounding bodies of water. Regular revised versions are posted to keep the bird list current at all times. This is the list used by all serious birders over their lifetime. You may be aware of the movie called the "Big Year". It was with this list that all the competing birders used in an attempt to set a new record as to how many bird species that could be seen by an individual birder in one calendar year.

I hope you will take advantage of these suggested websites. I have used each of them, in one way or another, throughout the years in my quest to better identify and understand our fine feathered friends.

Classic Collection of North American Birds