Beach Stone-curlew

From Dry Tropics Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Esacus magnirostris


Size 55-56cm.

Shy, large, heavy looking bird, with thick black and yellow bill. Bold black line through the eye, with white bands above and below. Black and white shoulder bar. Grey/brown body. Large yellow eyes, yellow/green legs. The black and white at the wing tips are obvious in flight.

Feeding Habits

Feed late afternoon when the tide is low, foraging on exposed intertidal mudflats and sand spits for crabs and other invertebrates.


No nest is made. Mostly one egg is laid on sand or amongst flotsam and grasses usually beneath a bush or tree above the high tide mark. Once the young have hatched both parents look after them until they reach 7 -12 months.

Traditional Owner Values

Manbarra Language Name : Tooaninnie meaning Death in the close family group.


This bird represents death. The curlew is a specific sign that their will be a death of someone in the close family group.

Places to Look

Confined to beaches, mudflats, river mouths and mangroves.


Nests and young are vulnerable to roaming dogs, feral cats and vehicles on the beach.


NQ Dry Tropics gratefully acknowledges the contribution of Birdlife Townsville (formerly the Townsville Region Bird Observers Club) to the information on this page.

© Birdlife Townsville
© Birdlife Townsville

This is a legacy website. Content is not being updated but is kept as an archive.
Updated NRM information is now held in the NQ Dry Tropics NRM Information Portal at
while corporate information about NQ Dry Tropics is held on our main website at
NQ Dry Tropics Website