Stocky, medium-sized shorebird with relatively short bill and legs. Combination of shape, overall color, and bill size usually distinctive. Beautiful breeding plumage shows entirely salmon-orange underparts and silvery wings with intricate patterning. Nonbreeding is plain gray with pale underparts and a white eyebrow; juvenile similar but with scaly pattern on wings. Usually shows dark barring on flanks. Legs are dull greenish or gray. Widespread and fairly common, breeding on high Arctic tundra and wintering on coastlines around the globe, as far south as Tierra del Fuego. Most numerous on beaches and mudflats; less common inland. Occurs in flocks, often mixed with other shorebirds. Compare with larger, lankier, longer-billed Great Knot in Asia and Australia. Feeds on a variety of small invertebrates; West Atlantic population reliant on horseshoe crab eggs during spring migration.
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