American Avocets are long-legged waders who spend much of their time in shallow water and on mud flats. They glide through the water, swishing their slender, upturned bills from side to side to catch aquatic invertebrates. They occasionally stop and delicately shake the mud from their slightly webbed feet. In summer, the black-and-white birds don what the Cornell Lab of Ornithology calls a “sophisticated” look, with their heads and necks turning a rusty shade. This avocet couple was photographed at Belmar Park in Lakewood by Park Hill resident Mark Silverstein.