Ngutuparore | Wrybill spotted 06 March 2023

Small bird with beak curved to its right.

As usual, I thought I was watching Dotterels. But as I took photo after photo I came to realise the three birds were in fact Ngutuparore | Wrybill. That curved beak is so distinctive, and they’re more grey and less brown on top.

I think there were 2 adults and a young one.

Wrybill with its face almost underwater as it dug for food.

They were fearless. I sat on the sand and they busied themselves nearby looking for food. They came to within just a couple of metres.

Small bird walking on wet sand.
Small bird walking in a few millimetres of water.

I always find them quite hilarious when they run — they go so fast their legs turn into a blur. Just look at the second half of the brief video below after the second bird comes into shot.

Miraz Jordan @WaikawaNews