Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
HABITAT: Inhabits the Nearctic coniferous forest zone, from boreal and subarctic regions into the low Arctic; occurs mainly inland, and to some extent upland. Prefers grassy meadows and bogs, natural clearings, or burned areas in forest with scattered stumps and fallen logs, often far from open water. Outside the breeding season, inhabits shallow prairie sloughs in open country, muddy shores of lakes and marshy ponds, sewage beds, river margins, and inland and coastal marshes.
SPECIAL HABITAT REQUIREMENTS: Tundra and muskeg.
NEST: Nests in a depression on the ground, singly or in loose colonies. Locates nest on a dry sloping bank, ridge, or level plateau, in open high woodland with sparse, fairly low undergrowth, in swampy muskeg, or on undrained land surrounded by farmland.
FOOD: Forages by picking and snatching food from shallow water, especially in wet, shortgrass marshes, or in shallow ponds, wet cultivated fields, or on mudflats. Eats ants, bugs, flies, grasshoppers, insect larvae, small fishes, crustaceans, and worms.
REFERENCES: Bent 1927, Cramp and Simmons 1983, Low and Mansell 1983, Palmer 1967.