Common passage migrant and winter visitor, scarce summer visitor. In Kuwait it nearly always occurs at coastal waters. Up to 1000 have been recorded in early February 1964. A charismatic wader breeding in northern Asia and wintering mainly on muddy shores on tropical coasts.
Where in Kuwait
It has preference for inter-tidal mudflats, as well as sandbars and salt-marshes, so is predominantly found around the coast of Jahra Bay. It is one of the only small waders with a long up-curved bill that makes it very distinctive. This species likes to associate with Ruddy Turnstones, smallish calidrids, and Charadrius plovers.
In the world
It has an extremely large range with a stable population and is a full migrant. The East Asian population migrates along the eastern coast of the continent, whereas the populations in western Asia pass south overland through the Caspian region, the Middle East or between the Ural and Volga rivers. The Finnish population flies across Eastern Europe and crosses the Mediterranean and Sahara non-stop. It feeds in a distinctive and very active way, chasing insects and other mobile prey, and sometimes then running to the water's edge to wash its catch.
Important migration staging areas are being lost through land reclamation, but oil pollution is another threat to this specialized feeder.