We have been stopping along the California coast at various sites from San Diego to the Santa Cruz area to check out the shorebirds there. What a wealth of diversity of birds, and what a diversity of adaptations they exhibit, especially in their beaks.
Of course the beak is the primary tool for extracting food in shorebirds, so you would expect to find specialized structures to do that. For example:
Even closely related species (e.g., in the same genus) exhibit particular beak structures that allow them to specialize on certain food resources. Few species exhibit the extreme specialization of the Curlews, whose very long and decurved bill is designed to extract crabs and other soft-bodied invertebrates embedded deep in the wet sand or mud.
This has been a subject of interest every time I visit the California shore, and there is more information about this (and a video) in a previous post: “sharing the resources”