A small shore
bird about 7 inches long with a sand-colored upper
side and a white underside. They use the beaches for their wintering
. These birds may migrate as early as July.
Recovery Needs: Top needs for piping plover recovery include monitoring population trends, managing and protecting populations and their habitat , and further research on the general ecology of the species.
- Piping plovers have been drastically reduced in number, due to the loss of beach habitat and to the modification of habitat through the channelization and damming of rivers . These practices eliminate sandbars and allow the growth of vegetation on nesting areas. Nesting success of piping plovers on beaches used by humans is much lower than on isolated beaches, because of disturbance .
Click on the language to view common names.
Common Names in English:
beach bird, beach plover, belted piping plover, clam-bird, mourning bird, pale ring-neck, Piping Plover, ring-neck, sand plover, western piping plover
Common Names in French:
Common Names in German:
Common Names in Japanese:
Common Names in Spanish:
Adult Summer: Face : Forehead: white Lores : white Bill: orange with black tip Body: Breast: may have a narrow blackish band Underparts: white Legs : Foot Color: yellow-orange Leg Color: yellow-orange.
brown above, lighter below; black band
forehead; bill orange with black tip
orange; white rump
black band encircles the body at the breast.
Female: Paler head
band; incomplete breast band. Winter coloration
Bill black; all birds lack breast band and head band.
Adult alternate: Thin black breast band · Orange base to dark bill · White forehead · Black line from eye to eye across forehead · Gray crown
Adult basic: Breast band paler and not complete · Dark bill
Juvenile : Similar to adult in basic plumage · Upperparts faintly fringed with white
About 7.25 inches long, with a wingspan of 14 to 15.5 inches. Adults weigh about 1.9 ounces .
Piping plovers nest on sandy beaches along the ocean or lakes . Along rivers , piping plovers use the bare areas of islands or sandbars . They also nest on the pebbly mud of interior alkali lakes and ponds . Birds nesting on gravel have higher reproductive success than those nesting on alkali. During the winter, piping plovers use algal, mud, and sand flats along the Gulf Coast. Spoil islands in the intracoastal waterway are also used.
Vegetation: coastal sand beaches and mudflats • Sensitivity to Disturbance: Medium
Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 2,911 meters (0 to 9,551 feet).
on sandy beaches, sandflats, barrier islands
, alkali lakes
, and sand/gravel pits7,9.
and areas of open vegetation are
all important brood-rearing habitats14. There is
high winter site fidelity8,9 in sandy bays, lagoons
List of Habitats :
- 5 Wetlands (inland)
- 5.1 Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls )
- 5.5 Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha)
- 5.7 Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha)
- 13 Marine Coastal/Supratidal
- 13.4 Marine Coastal/Supratidal - Coastal Brackish/Saline Lagoons/Marine Lakes [more info]
The diet consists of crustaceans, insects, and mollusks. The food is usually found by probing into the sandy soil for the items.
The breeding season
begins in late April and extends into late August.
is commonly coastal beaches with sand
. The nest
is a scrape created by both the male and female.
The female lays
3-5 (usually 4) eggs
that both adults
25-31 days. The young are precocial and leave the nest within a few
hours of hatching
. Both adults care for the young, but the female
will sometimes stop caring for the young sooner than the male does.
The young become independent
20-32 days after they hatch
- Clutch Size: 4
- Length of Incubation : 25-31 days
- Days to Fledge : 20-32
- Number of Broods: 1
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Grobben, 1908
- (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Bateson, 1885
- Cuvier, 1812
- Jawed Vertebrates
- Goodrich, 1930
- Linnaeus, 1758
- Gauthier, 1986
- (C. Linnaeus, 1758)
- Pycraft, 1900
- Huxley, 1867
- Huxley, 1867
- Beddard, 1898
- Infraorder: Charadriides () - Huxley, 1867
- Suborder: Limicolae () - Beddard, 1898
- Order: Charadriiformes () - Huxley, 1867
- Superorder: Charadriimorphae () - Huxley, 1867
- Cohort: Neognathae () - Pycraft, 1900
- Infraclass: Aves () - (C. Linnaeus, 1758)
- Subclass: Avialae () - Gauthier, 1986
- Class: Aves () - Linnaeus, 1758
- Superclass: Tetrapoda () - Goodrich, 1930
- Infraphylum: Gnathostomata () - auct. - Jawed Vertebrates
- Subphylum: Vertebrata () - Cuvier, 1812 - Vertebrates
- Phylum: Chordata () - Bateson, 1885 - Chordates
- Infrakingdom: Chordonia () - (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Branch: Deuterostomia () - Grobben, 1908
- Subkingdom: Bilateria () - (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Kingdom: Animalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - animals
Status: Accepted Name
First described: Corda In: Willd., Sp. pl., Edn 4 6(1):42, 1824.
Last scrutiny: 24-Jun-1996
Semipalmated Plover, Snowy Plover
Members of the genus Charadrius
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 60 species and subspecies in this genus:
C. alexandrinus (Western Snowy Plover) · C. alexandrinus alexandrinus (Snowy Plover) · C. alexandrinus dealbatus (Snowy Plover) · C. alexandrinus nivosus (Snowy Plover) · C. alexandrinus tenuirostris (Snowy Plover) · C. alticola (Puna Plover) · C. asiaticus (Caspian Plover) · C. australis (Inland Dotterel) · C. bicinctus (Banded Dotterel) · C. bicinctus bicinctus (Double-Banded Plover) · C. cinctus (Red-Kneed Dotterel) · C. collaris (Collared Plover) · C. dubius (Little Ringed Plover) · C. dubius charadrius (Little Ringed Plover) · C. dubius curonicus (Little Ringed Plover) · C. dubius dubius (Little Ringed Plover) · C. falklandicus (Two-Banded Plover) · C. forbesi (ForbesÌ Plover) · C. hiaticula (Common Ringed Plover) · C. hiaticula hiaticula (Common Ringed Plover) · C. hiaticula tundrae (Common Ringed Plover) · C. javanicus (Javan Sand Plover) · C. leschenaultii (Large Sand Dotterel) · C. leschenaultii leschenaultii (Greater Sand Plover) · C. marginatus (White-Fronted Sand Plover) · C. marginatus marginatus (White-Fronted Sand Plover) · C. melanops (Black-Fronted Plover) · C. melodus (Western Piping Plover) · C. melodus circumcinctus (Piping Plover) · C. melodus melodus (Piping Plover) · C. modestus (Rufous-Chested Dotterel) · C. mongolus (Short-Billed Sand Plover) · C. mongolus mongolus (Mongolian Plover) · C. mongolus stegmanni (Eastern Lesser Sand-Plover) · C. montanus (Mountain Plover) · C. morinellus (Eurasian Dotterel) · C. novaeseelandiae (Long-Billed Plover) · C. obscurus (Red-Breasted Dotterel) · C. obscurus obscurus (Red-Breasted Dotterel) · C. occidentalis (Snowy Plover) · C. pallidus (Chestnut-Banded Plover) · C. pecuarius (Kittlitz's Sand Plover) · C. pecuarius pecuarius (Kittlitz's Sand Plover) · C. peronii (Malaysian Sand Plover) · C. placidus (Long-Billed Ringed Plover) · C. rubricollis (Hooded Plover) · C. ruficapillus (Red-Capped Dotterel) · C. sanctaehelenae (St. Helena Sand Plover) · C. semipalmatus (Semipalmated Ring Plover) · C. thoracicus (Black-Banded Sand Plover) · C. tricollaris (Three-Banded Plover) · C. tricollaris tricollaris (Three-Banded Plover) · C. venustus (Chestnut-Banded Sand Plover) · C. veredus (Oriental Dotterel) · C. vociferous (Eastern Mew Gull) · C. vociferus (Kildeer Plover) · C. vociferus vociferus (Killdeer) · C. wilsonia (Thick-Billed Plover) · C. wilsonia beldingi (Wilson's Plover) · C. wilsonia wilsonia (Wilson's Plover)
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- Brands, S.J. (comp.) 1989-present. The Taxonomicon. Universal Taxonomic Services, Zwaag, The Netherlands. Accessed January 9, 2012.
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility. Accessed March 10, 2008. http://www.gbif.org Mediated distribution data from 10 providers.
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- Parker III, T.A., D.F. Stotz, and J.W. Fitzpatrick, and quot;Ecological and Distributional Databases for Neotropical Birds, and quot; in Neotropical Birds: Ecology and Conservation, by D.F. Stotz, T.A. Parker III, J.W. Fitzpatrick, and D.K. Moskovits (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996). ISBN 0-226-64676-9.
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- Private Forest Management Team, Auburn University
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- Sauer, J. R., J. E. Hines, and J. Fallon. 2005. The North American Breeding Bird Survey, Results and Analysis 1966 - 2004. Version 2005.2. USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD
- Sauer, J. R., S. Schwartz, and B. Hoover. 1996. The Christmas Bird Count Home Page. Version 95.1. USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, MD
- The Georgia Museum of Natural History and Georgia Department of Natural Resources
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal March 10, 2008:
- Avian Knowledge Network: eBird
- Avian Knowledge Network: Great Backyard Bird Count
- Bird Studies Canada: Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas 1981-1985
- Bird Studies Canada: Ontario Breeding Bird Atlas 2001-2005
- Borror Laboratory of Bioacoustics
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Ontario Nest Records
- Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility: Provincial Museum of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada. Birds (Aves)
- Canadian Museum of Nature: Canadian Museum of Nature Bird Collection
- Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University: Bay of Fundy Species List (OBIS Canada)
- Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University: MCZ Ornithology Collection
- Museum of Vertebrate Zoology: Terrestrial vertebrate specimens
- New Brunswick Museum: NBM birds
- University of Michigan Museum of Zoology (UMMZ): Bird specimens
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 8234
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-176508
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 2498402
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 176507
- IUCN ID: 199404
- Natural Heritage Network Species Identifier: ABNNB03070
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Species Identifier: B079
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 283
- Mean = 28.690 meters (94.127 feet), Standard Deviation = 44.920 based on 138,090 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]
- BirdLife International 2008. Charadrius melodus. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 31 January 2012. [back]