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Piping Plover      


These small, stocky shorebirds have a sand-colored upper body, a white underside, and orange legs. During the breeding season, adults have a black forehead, a black breast band, and an orange bill. Piping plovers use wide, flat, open, sandy beaches with very little grass or other vegetation. Nesting territories may include small creeks or wetlands. The female typically lays four eggs in a small, shallow nest that is lined with pebbles or broken shells. Piping Plovers eat insects, spiders, and crustaceans.


Piping plovers are migratory birds. In the spring and summer they breed in northern United States and Canada, on the shores of the Great Lakes, the shores of rivers and lakes in the Northern Great Plains, and along the Atlantic Coast. In the fall, plovers migrate south and winter along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, Florida, and the southern Atlantic coast.