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 Grey Plover  (Pluvialis squatarola )



Identification: Grey Plovers are bigger than Golden Plovers and have much greyer, almost silvery, upperparts. Their stouter head and especially the bigger almost bulging eyes, standing out in a paler face, are further helpful features. In spring, both plovers develop black underparts but in the Grey Plover the black is more solid and much more extensive. Grey Plovers look quite different in flight due to their obvious pale wing bars, pale barred upper-tail, white rump and, diagnostically, obvious black underarm patches.

Habitat: Winters on muddy estuaries and sandy beaches.

Distribution: Common migrant and winter visitor to most coastal areas, except northern Scotland where it is more irregular. Occurs rarely inland.

Breeds in high Arctic areas beyond Europe but occurs widely at coastal sites in winter. Usually seen in only small numbers around the Mediterranean, except in Portugal. Thousands have been counted on estuaries such as the Wash (England) and the Waddensee (Holland/Germany).

Population: Wintering figures for the British and Irish coasts reach 43200 birds which represents almost half of the total European population.

A minimum of 10 000 pairs breed within European Russia.


 Source: Internet
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