BLACK-TAILED GODWIT This elegant species is a member of the strongly-migratory Limosa genus of the wader family. There are three other species of the godwit family: the familiar Bar-tailed, Hudsonian and Marbled Godwits. The latter two species are restricted to the Americas and although the Hudsonian Godwit has turned up in the UK a few times the Marbled, which is also the world’s largest godwit, is yet to make footfall on British mud. Black-tailed Godwits are currently Red Listed in the UK and are a very rare re-colonised breeding bird. They were once regular breeders across large parts of Britain but draining of the fenlands that they favoured, plus the over-harvesting by bird catchers, combined with reputation as being good for the table, led to their demise. They returned to East Anglia as breeders as recently as 1952. Many of the birds that occur at Belfast Lough are of the Islandic race islandica, individuals (as below) of which sometimes go on to end up in Portugal. This race tends to be brighter brick-red around the neck and underparts.