Family Sandpipers, Snipes, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Near Threatened

Red Knot (Calidris canutus)


French: Bécasseau maubèche German: Knutt Spanish: Correlimos gordo

Tringa Canutus


, 1758,



In the past, genus Calidris was on occasion reserved for present species and C. tenuirostris only. Races islandica, rogersi and, until recently, roselaari formerly included within nominate canutus. Six subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. c. canutus (Linnaeus, 1758) – CN Siberia, in Taymyr Peninsula and possibly Yakutia; winters in W & S Africa and S Asia.
  • C. c. piersmai Tomkovich, 2001 – New Siberian Is; winters in NW Australia.
  • C. c. rogersi (Mathews, 1913) – Chukotskiy Peninsula and possibly areas farther W; winters in Australasia.
  • C. c. roselaari Tomkovich, 1990 – Wrangel I (off NE Siberia) and NW Alaska; probably winters on coasts of SE USA (Florida), S Panama and N Venezuela.
  • C. c. rufa (A. Wilson, 1813) – Canadian low Arctic; winters on coasts of NE & S South America.
  • C. c. islandica (Linnaeus, 1767) – islands of Canadian high Arctic and N Greenland; winters in W Europe.
  • Descriptive notes

    23–25 cm; 85–220 g; wingspan 45–54 cm. Distinctive large Calidris, with rich rusty chestnut underparts; upperparts mainly blackish mixed with pale... read more


    On the breeding grounds, melodious display call is a repeated, plaintive bisyllabic note, given in... read more


    High Arctic, occupying tundra and upland glacial gravel, marshy slopes and flats in foothills,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects, mainly adult and larval Diptera, also Lepidoptera, Trichoptera, beetles and bees; spiders, small crustaceans, snails and worms.... read more


    Lays Jun. Monogamous. Solitary, territory not important for feeding; normally c. 1 pair/km². Nest on open vegetated tundra or stone... read more


    Long distance migrant, with relatively few stopover sites. Race islandica, from Canada and... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. Global population 891,000–979,000 individuals. Estimated 15,000–30,000 pairs in Europe. Population... read more

    Recommended citation

    Van Gils, J., Wiersma, P. & Sharpe, C.J. (2020). Red Knot (Calidris canutus). 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 26 February 2020).