Family Sandpipers, Snipes, Phalaropes (Scolopacidae)

Least Concern

Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria)


French: Chevalier solitaire German: Einsamer Wasserläufer Spanish: Andarríos solitario

Tringa solitaria

A. Wilson

, 1813,

Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania, USA


Formerly considered conspecific with T. ochropus. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • T. s. cinnamomea (Brewster, 1890) – C & S Alaska through Yukon, W Northwest Territories and N British Columbia to NE Manitoba, generally N of 60° N; winters from N South America S to C Argentina.
  • T. s. solitaria A. Wilson, 1813 – E British Columbia through SC Canada to Quebec and Labrador, S to c. 50° N; winters from C Mexico and West Indies to South America S to N Argentina, and occasionally in S USA (from Texas to Florida).
  • Descriptive notes

    18–21 cm; 31–69 g; wingspan 55–59 cm. Adult has dark upperparts with pale spots; head and breast finely streaked dark brown; the only Tringa with... read more


    On breeding grounds, two song types are given: type I songs are given from ground, from high... read more


    Wet boreal muskeg forest, usually in rather open terrain with scattered trees. Outside breeding... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet includes aquatic insects and their larvae, small crustaceans, spiders, terrestrial insects (e.g. grasshoppers) and even small frogs.... read more


    Lays between late May and mid Jun (perhaps late Jun). Often uses old tree nests of passerines, such as American Robin (... read more


    Migratory, overland on broad fronts, extending right across North America, but main passage E of... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Population of cinnamomea numbers fewer than 10,000 birds (perhaps just 4000), while that of nominate race has been placed at... read more

    Recommended citation

    Van Gils, J., Wiersma, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria). 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 20 February 2020).