Species At Risk Profile: Piping Plover

helloSpecies At Risk Profiles

Common Name: Piping Plover
Species Name: Charadrius melodus
Description: The Piping Plover is a stocky shorebird with a white breast, abdomen and rump and pale brown to grey back, head and wings. It is identifiable by a black stripe across the forehead from eye to eye, a long white eyestripe and a single black band across the chest. It arrives at its breeding grounds in Manitoba in late April or May, and migrates back south in early August. Once paired, the male scrapes a shallow nest in the sand or gravel, which he presents to the female for her inspection. The nest is often lined with shells or pebbles, which keep the eggs off the wet sand, drains rainwater and acts as camouflage.
Where it can be found: In Manitoba, the piping plover is usually found nesting on broad, sparsely vegetated beaches along the shores of Lake Winnipeg, Lake Manitoba, West Shoal Lake, and occasionally Oak Lake and Whitewater Lake.
Threats: Piping plover nests are extremely vulnerable to predation and human disturbance. Threats to piping plovers include loss of nesting habitat due to cottage development, use of nesting beaches by cattle, all terrain vehicles, sunbathers, or other recreationalists, encroachment of vegetation, and flooding of nests or feeding areas by periodic high water levels.
Information Sources: Wikimedia, MB Conservation