The Eurasian curlew (Numenius arquata) is a wader, and the largest wader in Europe. The bird is called “storspove” in Norwegian. It is one of the most widespread of the curlews, breeding across temperate Europe and Asia. Unfortunately, the curlew population along the coast of Norway is not doing so well. It has been placed on the red list for endangered species by the Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre (Artsdatabanken).

The Eurasian curlew’s call is a loud curloo-oo. The English name “curlew” is imitative of this familiar call, but may have been influenced by the Old French corliu, “messenger”.

My inspiration for the drawing was a picture in a magazine, where the shapes of the dark spots on the bird’s body and feathers resembled birds in flight. The flight pattern seemed to be in the opposite direction of where the bird was heading. In addition, the pattern on the wings caught my eye as it sometimes resembles a butterfly’s wings more than bird feathers. A fun bird to draw, and yes, you can lose yourself in the details.

Size: 30 x 30 cm (11.8 x 11.8 inches). Materials: Ink and dip pen, pigment ink pen and pencil on acid free drawing paper.

Where is the original drawing?

The drawing was on display in our bed & breakfast for a short while before being bought by a visitor from Israel. At breakfast one day she talked about how quiet the birdlife was in Norway compared to Israel. She later sent me this photo showing the curlew on display in its new home.

Storspove on wall Israel