Snowy Plover: Small plover, pale brown upperparts, white underparts. Dark patches on either side of upper breast (partial breast band), behind eye, and on white forehead. Bill, legs, and feet are black. Wings have white stripes visible in flight. Dark tail has white edges. Dark gray legs and feet.
Range and Habitat
Snowy Plover: Occurs along the west coast from Washington to Baja California and along the Gulf Coast from Florida to the Yucatan Peninsula. Preferred habitats include sandy coastal beaches and shallow alkaline lakes.
The Snowy Plover is also known by the British name "Kentish Plover" in many other parts of the world.
Keeping to large, flat expanses of sand, it avoids competition for food in a habitat in which few other birds can exist.
Young leave their nest within three hours of hatching. They walk, run, and swim well and forage unassisted by parents, but require periodic brooding for many days after hatching.
A group of plovers has many collective nouns, including a "brace", "congregation", "deceit", "ponderance" and "wing" of plovers.
The Snowy Plover breeds in tropical and subtropical climates, and is found in Texas, Oklahoma, California, Oregon and Washington. Northern and inland populations will migrate south in winter months to the tropical parts of the Americas. The preferred breeding habitat includes sandy beaches and inland lakes; this species is uncommon in freshwater locations. Nests are shallow scrapes, and are built on the ground. Diets consist of small insects and invertebrates. The conservation rating for the Snowy Plover is Least Concern due to maintained and increasing populations in recent years.