Oh The Yellowlegs of Texas

Tringa melanoleuca

The Greater Yellowlegs breeds in Southern Alaska and the middle latitudes of Canada. Winter months are spent along the east and west coasts of North America, and well inland, including most of Mexico, Central America and the entire continent of South America.

At a distance and without a reliable size comparison, differentiating the Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs is a tricky proposition. While the general appearance of each bird is similar, the Lesser Yellowlegs is smaller and the bill length is shorter, relative to the head. Their vocalizations are nearly the same, though some have observed the calls of the Greater Yellowlegs is harsher, and louder and clearer, than the Lesser Yellowlegs.

In the spring of 2020 I met Yellowlegs at Aransas NWR. In one image I captured there appears to be both Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs. To compare the two, visit the Species galleries of the Greater Yellowlegs and the Lesser Yellowlegs.

Click map markers to reveal further information