Black coat scissors beak

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Black coat scissors beak
Black Mantled Scissors Bill (Rynchops niger)

Black Mantled Scissors Bill ( Rynchops niger )

Class : Birds (aves)
Order : Plover-like (Charadriiformes)
Family : Laridae
Subfamily : Scissor beaks (Rhynchopinae)
Genre : Scissor beaks ( rynchops )
Type : Black coat scissors beak
Scientific name
Rynchops niger
Linnaeus , 1758

The black-coat scissor beak ( Rynchops niger ), also known as the American scissors beak, is an American bird of the order of the plover-like (Charadriiformes).


The 45 cm long black-mantled scissors beak is a large gull-like bird with a large head, long wings, short tail, red legs and a very long, black beak with a red base. The lower bill is significantly longer than the upper bill. The plumage is dark brown or black on top. The forehead, underside and the rear edges of the wings are white.

Occurrence and subspecies

The following subspecies are distinguished:

  • R. n. Niger Linnaeus , 1758 - along the coasts of the USA (southern California, Massachusetts to Texas) and Mexico to Panama
  • R. n. Cinerascens Spix , 1825 - along the coast from Colombia to the mouth of the Amazon and the Gulf of Guayaquil, along the Orinoco and Amazon to Bolivia and northwestern Argentina
  • R. n. Intercedens Saunders, H , 1895 - along major rivers in eastern Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and north-eastern Argentina


The black-mantled scissors beak feeds mainly on fish, which it tries to catch with its lower beak while flying close to the water.

Hazardous situation

The black-mantled scissors beak is not considered to be endangered ( Least Concern ).


  • GR Angehr, R. Dean: The Birds of Panama. A Field Guide, Comstock Publishing Associates, 2010, ISBN 978-0-8014-7674-7

Web links

Commons : Schwarzmantel-Scherenschnabel ( Rynchops niger )  - Album with pictures, videos and audio files