Semipalmated Plover

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Scientific Information

Adult Semipalmated Plover guarding its nest with eggs in the gravel just above the beach.

The Semipalmated Plover (Charadrius semipalmatus) is an uncommon breeder on the Seward Peninsula. They tend to be found along flat gravel/sand bars on rivers or lake shores. Although during migration they may be found along coastal beaches. They primarily feed on small invertebrates.

These are a smaller plover and look very similar to a Killdeer but has one band rather than two. Their call is very similar sounding to the Golden-Plovers, which sounds like “chu-wee” when in flight. They are almost identical to the Common Ringed-Plover except for the call and a narrower breast band. These can swim short distances as “palmated” means webbed so they have partially webbed feet.

When a predator approaches an adult on a nest, the adult will perform the "broken wing dance" to lure the predator away. This is a similar behavior of that performed by Killdeer as well.

Community Information

Shishmaref

Name

Qiaqtalik

Spoken Name

Relevant Site Information

Semipalmated Plovers nest along the coast here on the Northern Seward Peninsula. A couple of adults were seen during the spring (2008) and even some have been viewed during the fall time (2007 & 2008). They are sometimes hunted by young hunters with their pellet guns.

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