Sharp-tailed Sandpiper
(Calidris acuminata)


Picture of bird
© Jukka Jantunen (
For additional photos and vocalizations, visit Dendroica. (Link opens in a new window.)

Small numbers of juvenile Sharp-tailed Sandpipers migrate southward through British Columbia and Yukon in the fall. While adults move directly from their breeding grounds in the Russian Arctic to their wintering grounds in Australasia, the juveniles exhibit a unique strategy, first passing through western Alaska. A small number of these juveniles reach as far east as British Columbia and Yukon, stopping at mostly coastal but also a few inland sites. Data are insufficient to quantify population trends for these fall migrants relative to 1970.


Main designations for the species
DesignationStatusDateSubspecies, population
IUCN (Global)Least concern2018 
Wild Species (Canada)Apparently secure2015 

Population status

Geographic area or populationPopulation change relative to ~1970ReliabilityStatus in relation to goal
CanadaData DeficientData DeficientData Deficient

Population estimate

Geographic area or populationPopulation estimate
Canada< 1,000 juveniles

Distribution maps


Migration strategy, occurrence

Seasonal visitor

Responsibility for conservation

Geographic areaResponsibility based on % of global population
CanadaVery Low

Conservation and management

A very small proportion (<1%) of Sharp-tailed Sandpipers visit British Columbia and Yukon each year, resulting in few local conservation concerns. Range-wide, this species is predominantly threatened by habitat loss at migratory stopover sites in Asia, from industrial development on mudflats and water diversion in major tributaries (Barter 2002). Hunting may also pose a minor threat because Sharp-tailed Sandpipers are captured in China, along with many other shorebirds, although hunting appears to be declining (Ming et al. 1998, Barter 2002).


Bird conservation region strategies

Environment and Climate Change Canada and partners have developed Bird Conservation Region Strategies in each of Canada’s Bird Conservation Regions (BCRs). In these strategies, selected species are identified as priorities for one or more of the following reasons:

  • conservation concerns (i.e., species vulnerable due to population size, distribution, population trend, abundance, or threats)
  • stewardship responsibilities (i.e., species that typify the regional avifauna or have a large proportion of their range or population in the sub-region)
  • management concerns (i.e., species that require ongoing management because of their socio-economic importance as game species, or because of their impacts on other species or habitats)
  • other concerns (i.e., species deemed a priority by regional experts for other reasons than those listed above or because they are listed as species at risk or concern at the provincial level)

Select any of the sub-regions below to view the BCR strategy for additional details.

BCRs, marine biogeographic units, and sub-regions in which the species is listed as a priority
RegionSub-region and priority type