Common Sandpiper: Eurasian counterpart to the Spotted Sandpiper; has dusky gray upperparts, heavily streaked breast, and sparkling white underparts. Best distinguished by its habit of standing in a semi-crouch and bobbing back and forth. Flies low over water with stiff shallow wing beats and glides.
Range and Habitat
Common Sandpiper: In nonbreeding season wanders widely along fresh and salt water edges throughout Europe, Africa, Middle East, South Asia, and Australia. Very rarely found on Aleutian Islands in Alaska.
In the Nukumanu language of the Nukumanu Islands, Papua New Guinea, a name for this species is matakakoni, but this is considered somewhat taboo; the reason for this is that matakakoni means "bird that walks a little, then copulates" in reference to the pumping tail and thrusting head movements it uses during foraging.
The Common Sandpiperis notable for a nervous mannerism of wagging its tail.
A group of sandpipers has many collective nouns, including a "bind", "contradiction", "fling", "hill", and "time-step" of sandpipers.
The Common Sandpiper is a small wader with widespread distribution. It is found throughout Europe and Asia, where it prefers to breed. This species builds its nests on the ground and very near local supplies of fresh water. During winter months, The Common Sandpiper migrates south to warmer climates. Destinations include Africa, southern Asia and Australasia. This bird is seldom witnessed traveling in large flocks. The Common Sandpiper forages in water and on the ground for food, including invertebrates, crustaceans and insects. This species will also at times catch insects while flying through the air. The conservation rating for the Common Sandpiper is Least Concern.