The Grey-tailed Tattler, Tringa brevipes (formerly Heteroscelus brevipes:
Pereira & Baker, 2005; Banks et al., 2006), is a small shorebird.
The Grey-tailed Tattler is closely related to its North American
counterpart, the Wandering Tattler (T. incana) and is difficult to
distinguish from that species. Both tattlers are unique among the
species of Tringa for having unpatterned, greyish wings and back, and a
scaly breast pattern extending more or less onto the belly in breeding
plumage, in which both also have a rather prominent supercilium.
These birds resemble Common Redshanks in shape and size. The upper
parts, underwings, face and neck are grey, and the belly is white. They
have short yellowish legs and a bill with a pale base and dark tip.
There is a weak supercilium.
They are very similar to their American counterpart, and
differentiation depends on details like the length of the nasal groove
and scaling on the tarsus. The best distinction is the call; Gray-tailed
has a disyllabic whistle, and Wandering a rippling trill.
Its breeding habitat is stony riverbeds in northeast Siberia. It
nests on the ground, but these birds will perch in trees. They also
sometimes use old nests of other birds.
Grey-tailed Tattlers are strongly migratory and winter on muddy and
sandy coasts from southeast Asia to Australia. They are very rare
vagrants to western North America and western Europe. These are not
particularly gregarious birds and are seldom seen in large flocks except
These birds forage on the ground or water, picking up food by sight.
They eat insects, crustaceans and other invertebrates.