Peruvian Thick-knee Burhinus superciliaris

Chilean name: Chorlo cabezón

Peruvian Thick-knee, Lluta River, Arica, Chile, February 2007 - click for larger image The Peruvian Thick-knee is distributed from the extreme south of Ecuador through Peru to the extreme north of Chile. They are usually found in dry agricultural areas and semi-arid grasslands.

It has a large head and very large eyes and, as the name suggests, thick "knees" on its long legs. The head has a pale supercilium with a thick black stripe above and the bill is pale greenish-yellow with a dark tip.

They feed at night, hence the large eyes, and roost during the day in the dry grass. Very well camouflaged and immobile during the day, they are difficult birds to spot.
Peruvian Thick-knee, Lluta River, Arica, Chile, February 2007 - click for larger image There is a recording and a distribution map on xeno-canto.

The north of Chile seems to be a fairly recent range extension. HBW Volume 3, published in 1996, does not include the north of Chile in its range except to mention "One record from N Chile in 1851 may have referred to a vagrant, or perhaps to an extension, presumably temporary, of range as currently known." So its good to see them back.
Peruvian Thick-knee, Lluta River, Arica, Chile, February 2007 - click for larger image
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