Stilt (Pied) Himantopus himantopus leucocephalus
Species: H. himantopus (disputed)
Subspecies: H. h. leucocephalus
Binomial name: Himantopus himantopus leucocephalus
Synonyms: Himantopus leucocephalus
Common names: White-headed Stilt, Pied Stilt, Poaka, Tutumata, Tuturipourewa.
Himantopus himantopus leucocephalus are found from Java to New Guinea, Australia, and the Philippines region and throughout New Zealand.
The head is usually all white; the front of the neck is white with a black back. There is usually a white band across upper back. The scapulars (shoulder feathers) and entire upper surface of wings are a glossy greenish black. The lining and under surface of wings are a sooty black and the rest of the plumage is pure white, with the exception of the tail-feathers. The bill is black and sometimes horn-coloured at the tip; legs and feet are deep pink flesh-colour. They eat mainly water insects but also crustaceans at coastal lagoons and earthworms in damp fields.
The breeding habitat of all these stilts is marshes, shallow lakes and ponds were they nest in small colonies. Breeding occurs in New Zealand from July to October depending on the area and altitude. The nests are always close to water. They usually lay one clutch of four pyrform (tapered) to oval shaped eggs which are brown to olive in colour and these are heavily marked with brown spots and streaks.
Listen to the calls http://www.xeno-canto.org/species/Himantopus-leucocephalus
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