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Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Clade: Aequorlitornithes
Order: Charadriiformes
Suborder: Limicoli
Family: Scolopacidae
Genus: Calidris
Species: C. virgata
Binomial name
Calidris virgata
(Gmelin, 1789)
File:Calidris virgata map.svg

Aphriza virgata

File:Surfbird and Black Turnstone.png

A Surfbird with Black Turnstones.

Surfbird, Calidris virgata (cal-ID-ris ver-GAY-tah; genus: Lat., from Gr. kalidris, a speckled water bird; species name: Lat., twiggy, made of twigs, and streaked,[2] in allusion to heavily streaked back and breast in summer plumage[3]) is a species of sandpiper in the Scolopacidae family and is common along rocky Pacific shores in the winter.[4]

It got its name, Surfbird, because it feeds at surf line when on coast, unmindful of flying spray.[3]

A Pacific coast rocky shorebird, the bird is rather chunky, with a length of 25 cm (9.8 in).[5]


Similar and related species[]


They are often seen in the company of Black Turnstones.[5]






  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Calidris virgata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Jaeger, E. C. (1955). A source-book of biological names and terms. 3d ed. Springfield, Ill.: Charles C. Thomas, Publisher.
  3. ^ a b Terres, John K. (1980). The Audubon Society Encyclopedia of North American Birds. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0394466519. 
  4. ^ Robbins, Chandler S.; Bertel Bruun, Herbet S. Zim and Arthur Singer (illu.) (1983). A Guide to Field Indentification: Birds of North America. Western Publishing Company. ISBN 0307336565. 
  5. ^ a b Dunn, Jon L. and Alderfer, Jonathan (2011). National Geographic Completely Birds of North America. National Geographic Society. ISBN 9781426213731. 

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