Himantopus himantopus Linnaeus, 1758

Himantopus himantopus imageSynonyms:

Common names: Bulg: Kokilobegach; Engl: Black-winged Stilt; Rom: Piciorong; Russ: Khodulochnik; Turk: Uzun bacak; Ukr: Khodulychnyk



Taxonomic descriptions: Monotype genus, the only species and nominative sub-species H. himantopus occur in the Black Sea region. Numbers have increased lately to 2,000 breeding pairs.

Himantopus himantopus arealIUCN Status:
    World level: VU
    Black Sea Regional level: VU
    Subregion level: EN


Habitats type, Critical habitats, Limiting factors: Breeding habitats are fresh and brackish shallow waters, where large nests are made straight in the water, or on elevations of various origin. Avoids dense vegetation. Brooding and feeding habitats are primarily the same.

Biology: Breeding and migratory species. Spring migration takes place in April and is over by early May. Mass egg-laying is in the end of May, early clutches appear by the middle of the month. Breeds in loose colonies, often together with terns and other waders. Clutch size is always 4, doubled clutches of 6-8 eggs may be found in places of high concentration. Hatching peaks in mid June, or in the second ten days of the month. Fledglings occur from mid July. Autumn migration is hardly detectable, post-breeding movements gradually become migration. Sharp decrease follows in August, the majority leave by early September. Single birds may stay till as long as early October. Surface or plankton aquatic invertebrates form the basic diet of Black-winged Stilts, but birds can forage on the ground for insects and spiders as well.

Population trends: Probably a stabilization of numbers in the years ahead.

Threats: Water pollution, cattle grazing, human disturbance, high predation risk.

Conservation measures taken: Creation of reservoirs within the ranges of water protection zones in estuaries and coastal lakes.

Conservation measures proposed:


  1. Siokhin V.D., Chernichko I.I., Ardamatskaia T.B. et.al. Colonial Hydrophilic Birds of the South of Ukraine: Charadriformes.- Kiev. "Naukova Dumka", 1988. 176 p. (in Russian).
  2. Red Data Book of Ukraine, 1994, p.347.

Compiled by: J.Chernichko