Friday, 24 April 2015

Moorland riches ...

Golden Plover (Pluvialis apricaria)


Motionless and, at first view, almost invisible against a sunlit moorland, a Golden Plover is a wonderful sight, the ‘golden’ in its name being well deserved. It is even more dramatic when in an environment of silence, only broken by its delicate plaintive whistle.

It breeds on high moorland and tundra from Iceland right across to Siberia, including northern Britain, wintering in large flocks in west and southwest Europe, including Sussex, and the Mediterranean. Its nest is typically a shallow scrape, lined with pieces of lichen, heather, grass and bilberry, often in burned areas; hence its presence in such regions on the upland grouse moors.

A female at rest in the late afternoon sun …

References:

Barfield, C., (2014). Golden Plover. The Birds of Sussex. Thetford: British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) Books on behalf of the Sussex Ornithological Society, pp. 239-240.
Nobbs, J. (1996). Golden Plover. Birds of Sussex. Sussex Ornithological Society, pp. 241-242.

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