Wilson’s Phalarope

The Wilson’s Phalarope was named after the Scottish-American ornithologist Alexander Wilson. Wilson is considered by some to be the greatest American ornithologist, even ahead of Audobon. Several bird species were named after Wilson.

This male Wilson’s Phalarope; the males tend the nest, stands on guard watching over a nest with four eggs. Once she laid the eggs, the female left to migrate to her winter home. These birds are 9.1 inches long from the tip of their tail to the tip of their beak.

This Wilson’s Phalarope nest drawing was done by Walter Raine (1861-1934) and appeared in his book Bird-Nesting in North-West Canada which was published in 1892. I didn’t find a lot to share with you about Raine. According to the preface of his book, he did all of his own illustrations. He worked on the book “after-hours” which implied he may have had a full-time job that was not related to ornithology or natural history.

In this drawing, we have a single male bird standing guard over his nest. Nestled in a patch of sea-grass, the nest is sheltered from both the elements and natural predators. In the background is an

wilsons phalarope nest drawing

This image is copyright free and in the public domain anywhere that extends copyrights 70 years after death or at least 120 years after publication when the original illustrator is unknown.