Upland Sandpiper Life History


Habitat GrasslandsNative prairie and other dry grasslands, including airports and some croplands.Back to top


Food InsectsMostly insects, including weevils and other beetles, grasshoppers, and crickets. Also some weed seeds.Back to top


Nest Placement

Nest Ground

Nest Description

Scrape in the ground; may be completely unlined, or built up with leaves and twigs.

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size:2-7 eggs
Egg Description:Buff with dark spotting.
Condition at Hatching:Downy and active, capable of leaving nest and feeding themselves almost immediately after hatching.
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Behavior Ground ForagerFeeds while walking along the ground.Back to top


Conservation Low ConcernThe Upland Sandpiper was once very abundant and widespread within its range. Though less common, despite some significant decreases in some areas, there have been increases in others, and overall the population was stable between 1966 and 2014, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. A 2012 assessment predicts that the current North American population is about 750,000. The species is not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List. Upland Sandpiper was once prized as a delicacy, both for its flesh and its eggs; hunting continued until well after the passage of the Migratory Bird Treaty in 1918. Hunting in the West Indies remains a conservation concern. Conversion of native grasslands to croplands in both North and South America has also caused populations to fall.Back to top


Andres, B. A., P. A. Smith, R. I. G. Morrison, C. L. Gratto-Trevor, S. C. Brown and C. A. Friis. 2012a. Population estimates of North American shorebirds, 2012. Wader Study Group Bulletin no. 119 (3):178-194.

Houston, C. Stuart, Cameron Jackson and Daniel E. Bowen Jr. 2011. Upland Sandpiper (Bartramia longicauda), version 2.0. In The Birds of North America (P. G. Rodewald, editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, USA.

Lutmerding, J. A. and A. S. Love. Longevity records of North American birds. Version 2015.2. Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Bird Banding Laboratory 2015.

North American Bird Conservation Initiative. 2014. The State of the Birds 2014 Report. US Department of Interior, Washington, DC, USA.

Sauer, J. R., J. E. Hines, J. E. Fallon, K. L. Pardieck, Jr. Ziolkowski, D. J. and W. A. Link. The North American Breeding Bird Survey, results and analysis 1966-2013 (Version 1.30.15). USGS Patuxtent Wildlife Research Center 2014b. Available from

Sibley, D. A. (2014). The Sibley guide to birds, second edition. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, USA.

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