Oystercatchers (Haematopodidae)
Oystercatchers are medium-sized black or black-and-white birds found mostly along seashores, but also inland along rivers and lakes. They are structurally similar with strong pink legs and a long, thick red bill. They feed predominantly on molluscs, which are opened or smashed to obtain the contents. They are generally gregarious, and often form huge high-tide flocks at favoured intertidal locations.
There are seven species worldwide, of which one breeds in Europe.
Species seen but not photographed:
  • South Island Pied Oystercatcher: New Zealand (November 2001)
  • Variable Oystercatcher: New Zealand (November 2001)