Black Necked Stilt
13″ tall, 27″ wingspan
20 yrs. (captive), 5-7 yrs. (wild)
Mollusks, Insects, Fish, Shrimp, Seeds
Snakes, Birds, Mammals
Atlantic, Pacific & Gulf Coasts of the United States
Marshes, mudflats, and drainage ditches
Black-necked Stilts have partially webbed feet with widely spread toes, used to prevent the animal from sinking into the mud as they forage for food. Stilts have an effective anti-predator display called the ‘popcorn display’, consisting of a group of adults encircling a ground predator and hopping side to side while flapping their wings. Black-necked stilts, unlike many birds, are able to use man-made structures to forage for food.
Females lay a clutch of 3-4 eggs. These chicks hatch after a 26-day incubation in a nest on the ground, lined with sticks, mud, shells, grass and twigs. Newly hatched chicks must walk, run and swim within 24 hours of hatching. At night, the chicks hide in the water to avoid predators.
ANIMAL FUN FACT!
Black-necked Stilts are very protective parents and will try to chase away any predator, including man.