Knots feeding at low tide


Knots, known as red knots in America as a result of their lovely red summer plumage, are stocky wading and shore birds. They undertake one of the longest migrations of any animal from their Arctic breeding grounds to the coasts and estuaries of Europe, Africa and Australia where they spend the winter feasting on invertebrates. They often form large, wheeling flocks that contain in excess of 100,000 birds.

Scientific name: Calidris canutus

Rank: Species

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Map showing the distribution of the Knot taxa

Species range provided by WWF's Wildfinder.

The Knot can be found in a number of locations including: Africa, Arctic, Asia, Australia, China, Europe, Mediterranean, North America, Russia, South America, United Kingdom, Wales, Ynys-hir nature reserve. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the Knot distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.


Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

Conservation Status

Least Concern

  1. EX - Extinct
  2. EW
  3. CR - Threatened
  4. EN - Threatened
  5. VU - Threatened
  6. NT
  7. LC - Least concern

Year assessed: 2009

Classified by: IUCN 3.1


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Vertebrates
  4. Birds
  5. Shorebirds
  6. Scolopacidae
  7. Calidris
  8. Knot

BBC News about Knot

  • Autumnwatch: Ballet of the knot A spectacular wildlife event takes place in north Norfolk when thousands of migratory birds fly in for their winter roost.

Video collections

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