One of the regular visitors to Leighton Moss RSPB reserve in Lancashire,NW England.
Sony Alpha 350 DSLR Sigma 150-500 zoom at 500mm handheld,single RAW image tonemapped in Photomatix Pro4
The Pied Avocet (or just Avocet in the UK) is a striking white wader with bold black markings. Adults have white plumage except for a black cap and black patches in the wings and on the back. They have long, upturned bills and long, bluish legs. It is approximately 16.5–17.75 inches (42–45.1 cm) in length of which the bill is approximately 2.95–3.35 inches (7.5–8.5 cm) and the legs are approximately 3–4 inches (7.6–10 cm). Its wing-span is approximately 30–31.5 inches (76–80 cm). Males and females look alike. The juvenile resembles the adult but with more greyish and sepia tones.
The call of the Avocet is a far-carrying, liquid, melodious kluit kluit.
These birds forage in shallow brackish water or on mud flats, often scything their bills from side to side in water (a feeding technique that is unique to the avocet]. They mainly eat crustaceans and insects.
Their breeding habitat is shallow lakes with brackish water and exposed bare mud. They nest on open ground, often in small groups, sometimes with other waders. 3-5 eggs are laid in a lined scrape or on a mound of vegetation.
The Avocet became extinct in Great Britain in 1840.Its successful recolonisation at Minsmere, Suffolk, in 1947 led to its adoption as the logo of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. Source Wikipedia