Family Sandpipers, Snipes, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Least Concern

Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes)


French: Petit Chevalier German: Kleiner Gelbschenkel Spanish: Archibebe patigualdo chico

Scolopax flavipes

J. F. Gmelin

, 1789,

New York, USA




Alaska to SC Canada, E to James Bay. Winters from C California and New Jersey, USA, through Mexico, Central America and West Indies to South America S to Tierra del Fuego.

Descriptive notes

23–25 cm; 48–114 g; wingspan 59–64 cm. Slim, medium-sized Tringa with relatively short, straight, thin, pointed bill; blackish upperparts with... read more


Most frequently heard call is a quiet “tu”, given either singly or doubly, and louder and with more... read more


Swampy muskeg habitat, clearings within tall, open woodland with sparse undergrowth, sometimes... read more

Food and feeding

On breeding grounds, takes cranefly larvae, beetles, Diptera eggs and larvae, snails and spiders. Non-breeding diet includes variety of... read more


Breeds May–Aug. Seasonally monogamous, with pairs forming on breeding grounds. Often up to 3–4 pairs/km². Nest a scrape (... read more


Migratory. Moves through E Canada, E of breeding range, and (mid Jul to mid Sept) interior USA... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Total population comprises at least 400,000 birds (in 2000–2005), with breeding density in N Ontario c. 1–10 pairs in... read more

Recommended citation

Van Gils, J., Wiersma, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 18 February 2020).