Eskimo Curlew, Numenius borealis.
Formerly considered conspecific with Little Curlew N. minutus. Now considered to be a montypic species forming a superspecies with Little Curlew. IUCN red list considers this species to be Critically Endangered.
|Specimen number 1818.104.22.1682. Collected 02/04/1889 Brownsville Texas.|
Left lateral view.
|Specimen number 1822.214.171.1242. Dorsal view.|
|Specimen number 18126.96.36.1992. 45° left ventral view.|
Quite clearly the mass slaughter of these birds was a major factor in their steep decline, however, when their hunting was outlawed in 1916 there was no recovery of the population. At that time the prairies were altered so drastically that it is thought that this prevented any recovery and added to the situation faced today where the bird is almost certainly extinct. In 1962 photographs were taken of a single bird on Galveston Island in Texas and the last known and confirmed wild bird was collected in Barbados in 1963. Since then only unconfirmed reports have been made up to around 2006.
|Specimen number 18188.8.131.522. Head detail.|
del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A. & Sargatal. J. eds (1996) Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 3. Hoatzin to Auks. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
Birdlife International (2013) Species factsheet: Haematopus meadewaldoi. http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/speciesfactsheet.php?id=3008 Downloaded from http://birdlife.org on 19/02/2013.
Wikipedia 16/02/2013: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Live_Eskimo_Curlew.jpg The last photograph is available at this link.
Last of the Curlews Fred Bodsworth.