These Great Cove visitors curse and chatter loudly when they’re disturbed, which is why they’re commonly called “Yelpers,” “Telltales,” and “Tattlers.” However, the official name-givers for birds decided that these fish chasing Sandpipers should be called Greater Yellow Legs.
Their official name, of course, begs the question of them being “Greater than what?” The name-givers covered themselves on that by calling a shorter yellow-legged sandpiper a Lesser Yellow Legs. It seems to us that calling these birds “Larger” and “Smaller” would be less demeaning and more accurate.
The common names of flora and fauna vary with language; that’s why we need unchanging and universal scientific names for them. Nonetheless, we’ve never heard someone who spots a Greater Yellow Legs shout, “Look! There’s a Tringa melanoleuca!” (Brooklin, Maine)