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The Common Ringed Plover or Ringed Plover (Charadrius hiaticula), called Större Strandpipare in Skåne, is a small plover that breeds in Arctic Eurasia. The genus name Charadrius is a Late Latin word for a yellowish bird mentioned in the fourth-century Vulgate. It derives from Ancient Greek kharadrios a bird found in ravines and river valleys (kharadra, "ravine"). The specific hiaticula is Latin and has a similar meaning to the Greek term, coming from hiatus, "cleft" and -cola, "dweller" (colere, "to dwell").
Breeding, range and habitat
The Common Ringed Plover's breeding habitat is open ground on beaches or flats across northern Eurasia and in Arctic northeast Canada. Some birds breed inland, and in western Europe they nest as far south as northern France. They nest on the ground in an open area with little or no plant growth.
Egg – MHNT
By Didier Descouens - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
If a potential predator approaches the nest, the adult will walk away from the scrape, calling to attract the intruder and feigning a broken wing. Once the intruder is far enough from the nest, the plover flies off.
Common Ringed Plovers are migratory and winter in coastal areas south to Africa. In Norway, geolocators have revealed that adult breeding birds migrate to West Africa. Many birds in Great Britain and northern France are resident throughout the year.
Range map from www.oiseaux.net - Ornithological Portal Oiseaux.net
www.oiseaux.net is one of those MUST visit pages if you're in to bird watching. You can find just about everything there
By Cephas - BirdLife International. 2016. Charadrius hiaticula. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016:
e.T22693759A86575756. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T22693759A86575756.en. Downloaded on 20 June 2018.,
CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=70105461
There are three weakly defined subspecies, which vary slightly in size and mantle colour; they intergrade where their ranges meet:
• C. h. psammodroma – Salomonsen, 1930: breeds in Iceland, Greenland, northeast Canada; winters in west Africa. It is intermediate in size and colour.
• C. h. hiaticula – Linnaeus, 1758: breeds from temperate western Europe north to central Scandinavia; resident or short-distance migrant to southwest Europe. It is the largest and palest subspecies.
• C. h. tundrae – (Lowe, 1915): breeds in Arctic northern Scandinavia and Asia; winters in Africa and southwest Asia. It is the smallest and darkest subspecies.
• C. h. hiaticula and C. h. tundrae are among the taxa to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.
Adults are 17–19.5 cm in length with a 35–41 cm wingspan. They have a grey-brown back and wings, a white belly, and a white breast with one black neckband. They have a brown cap, a white forehead, a black mask around the eyes and a short orange and black bill.
The legs are orange and only the outer two toes are slightly webbed, unlike the slightly smaller but otherwise very similar semipalmated plover, which has all three toes slightly webbed, and also a marginally narrower breast band; it was in former times included in the present species.
Juvenile Ringed Plovers are duller than the adults in colour, with an often incomplete grey-brown breast band, a dark bill and dull yellowish-grey legs.
This species differs from the smaller little Ringed Plover in leg colour, the head pattern, and the lack of an obvious yellow eye-ring.
Length: 20 cm
Wingspan: 48 - 57 cm
Weight: 55 - 75 g
Longevity: 10 years
• A medium-small plover. Has a distinctive bold black and white pattern on the head, black breast band, short orange bill with a black tip, and orange legs.
The sandy brown upperparts blend well with a variety of shingle and sand colours, so that a sitting bird is often unnoticed.
• Semipalmated Plover is closest, differing in having vestigial webs between the toes, a shorter white supercilium, and a different call note.
• Little Ringed Plover, the more common similar species in Europe, differs in being smaller, with a narrower breast band, no white wingbar, a yellow eye ring, dull pinkish legs, and slightly paler brown upperparts.