Eurasian Curlew

About the Eurasian Curlew

Also known as: Common Curlew, Curlew, European Curlew, Western Curlew, Whaup

The Eurasian Curlew is a large species of wader with a very long bill. Eurasian Curlews range from central and southern Europe and Asia to parts of Africa. They are migratory.

Eurasian Curlews feed primarily on invertebrates. They find prey by touch, using their unique long, curved bills. Males and females have similar plumage, but females are much larger in size.

Eurasian Curlews are known simply as Curlew through much of their range. They breed in meadows and other flat scrubland-type habitat. They are named for their loud call, which sounds like they are yelling "curloo-oo-oo."

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Details & Statistics

Added to Birdorable
Hatched on 19 December 2011
Scientific Name
Numenius arquata
  • Charadriiformes
  • Scolopacidae
  • Numenius
  • N. arquata
Birdorable Family
Conservation Status
Near Threatened (as of 6 April 2020)
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
Units: Imperial / Metric
21 inches
35 inches
21 to 35 ounces



From IUCN Red List:
The Eurasian Curlew is listed as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List and was last assessed in 2015 by BirdLife International. This widespread species remains common in many parts of its range, and determining population trends is problematic. Nevertheless, declines have been recorded in several key populations and overall a moderately rapid global decline is estimated. As a result, the species has been uplisted to Near Threatened; it almost qualifies for threatened under criteria A2bcd+3bcd+4bcd.

International Names

Czech (Cesky) koliha velká
Danish (Dansk) Storspove
Dutch (Nederlands) Wulp
Finnish (Suomi) kuovi
French (Français) Courlis cendré
German (Deutsch) Großer Brachvogel
Italian (Italiano) Chiurlo maggiore
Japanese (日本語) ダイシャクシギ (daishakushigi)
Korean (한국어) 마도요
Norwegian (Norsk) Storspove
Polish (Polski) kulik wielki
Russian (русский язык) Кроншнеп большой
Spanish (Español) Zarapito Real
Swedish (Svenska) Storspov
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10 Facts about the Eurasian Curlew

10 Facts about the Eurasian Curlew

Here are ten facts about the Eurasian Curlew: The Eurasian Curlew is the largest wading bird found in Europe; In Scotland it is known as the "Whaup"; The birds can be found from central and ... more