Knot, the European name of a sandpiper of the genus tringa (Linn.), one of the few birds common to the old and new worlds; other names are the ash-colored, red-breasted, gray-backed, and robin snipe; it is the T. canutus (Linn.). The length is about 10 in., the extent of wings 20, the bill 1 1/3, and the weight 6 oz.; it is the largest of the genus in the United States. The color of the summer plumage is light gray above, with black and pale reddish spots; rump and upper tail coverts white, with narrow bands and crescents of black; below light brownish red, with under tail coverts, thighs, sides, and under wing coverts white, spotted and barred with brownish black; quills brownish black, with white shafts; tail brownish cinereous, each feather white-edged. In winter the upper parts are darker, with brownish black edgings; below dull ashy white, lightest on abdomen, with numerous longitudinal dark brown lines and spots on the breast and neck. The knot is found throughout eastern North America and Europe. It is a very active bird, nimbly running and wading along the edge of the waves on sandy beaches, searching for minute shell fish and marine worms; the flight is swift, and large flocks perform very beautiful and rapid aerial evolutions.
The flesh of the young and fat birds is considered a delicacy.