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The coursers are a group of birds which together with the pratincoles make up the family Glareolidae. They have long legs, short wings and long pointed bills which curve downwards. Their most unusual feature for birds classed as waders is that they inhabit deserts and similar arid regions.

Cream-coloured Courser (Cursorius cursor) Tal Chhapar, Churu, Rajasthan, India February 15th, 2013.jpg
Cream-colored courser
(Cursorius cursor)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Charadriiformes
Suborder: Charadrii
Family: Glareolidae
Subfamily: Cursoriinae


They have cryptic plumage and crouch down when alarmed to avoid detection by predators.

Like the pratincoles, the coursers are found in warmer parts of the Old World. They hunt insects by running.

Their 2–3 eggs are laid on the ground.

Species in taxonomic orderEdit


  • Hayman, Marchant and Prater, Shorebirds ISBN 0-395-37903-2