Crown, nape, scapulars, and lesser wing-coverts, black: cheeks, and under parts, pure white.
R. Avocetta, Temm. Man. d'Orn. torn. 11. p. 590. Scooping Avocet, Mont. Orn. Diet. Bew. Brit. Birds, vol. 11. p. 116. Selb. Illust. vol. 11. p. 90. pl. 20.
Entire length eighteen inches: length of the bill (from the forehead) three inches, (from the gape) three inches two lines; of the tarsus two inches nine lines; of the tail two inches ten lines; from the carpus to the end of the wing eight inches six lines.
(Adult male and female). Crown of the head, nape, two-thirds of the hind part of the neck, scapulars, lesser wing-coverts, and primary quills, deep black; all the rest of the plumage pure white: bill black: irides reddish brown: legs bluish gray. (Young of the year, before the first moult). "All the black parts of the plumage tinged with brown; the brownish black on the head not extending below the occiput; scapulars edged with red, and tipped with reddish ash: legs cinereous." Temm. (Egg). Olive-brown, blotched and spotted with brownish black: long, diam. two inches three lines; trans, diam. one inch five lines.
Common in small flocks on some parts of the coast during Winter. Breeds in the fens of Lincolnshire, and in other extensive marshy districts. Lays two eggs. Food, worms and marine insects.