For the journal of the Australasian Wader Studies Group, see Stilt
Black-winged Stilt/Common Stilt
Adult H. h. himantopus
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Clade: Aequorlitornithes
Order: Charadriiformes
Family: Recurvirostridae
Genus: Himantopus
Brisson, 1760

Stilt is a common name for several species of birds in the family Recurvirostridae, which also includes those known as avocets. They are found in brackish or saline wetlands in warm or hot climates[1].

They have extremely long legs, hence the group name, and long thin bills. Stilts typically feed on aquatic insects and other small creatures and nest on the ground surface in loose colonies[1].

Handbook of Birds of the World recognises three species in two genera[2]:

  • Black-winged Stilt or White-backed Stilt, Himantopus himantopus
    • Pied Stilt or White-headed Stilt, Himantopus (himantopus) leucocephalus
    • Hawaiian Stilt or aeʻo, Himantopus (himantopus/mexicanus) knudseni
    • White-backed Stilt, Himantopus (himantopus/mexicanus) melanurus
    • Black-necked Stilt, Himantopus (himantopus/mexicanus) mexicanus
  • Black Stilt, Himantopus novaezelandiae
  • Banded Stilt, Cladorhynchus leucocephalus

A fossil stilt has been described as Himantopus olsoni, based on remains recovered in the Late Miocene Big Sandy Formation of Wickieup, USA.


  1. ^ a b Terres, John K. (1980). The Audubon Society Encyclopedia of North American Birds. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0394466519. 
  2. ^ John H. Boyd III (November 10, 2011). "CHARADRIIFORMES". TiF Checklist. Retrieved 20-09-2020.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)

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Eurasian Spoonbill This article is part of Project Bird Genera, a All Birds project that aims to write comprehensive articles on each genus, including made-up genera.
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