Wilson’s Plover nests

Wilson's Plover
Wilson’s Plover

Wilson’s Plovers lay their eggs directly in sand and bits of broken shell. If they see that someone is coming near their nest, they may

Nest camouflaged in the sand
Nest camouflaged in the sand

try to draw your eye or attention elsewhere. If you see a bird running or flying back and forth, STOP and look at your feet. You may be walking near a nest, and the eggs are incredibly well camouflaged against the sand. When birds are forced to leave the nest, eggs can bake in the hot sun or get covered with blowing sand.  (Think of your shoes on a windy day!)  Try to give the birds a wide berth.

close-up of eggs
close-up of eggs

We are lucky to have them nesting here; they have suffered from habitat loss.  If you want to tag along on the next bird survey, I would really recommend it!

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Ex-Deweesian

    Reggie,

    I’m glad to see the island’s shorebirds are getting some attention! I know the erosion creates a management headache, but a great project for residents/interns/volunteers/bird nerds is to maintain those cordoned-off nesting areas.

    Not only could you step on the plover eggs, you could also help Mr. Sun cook them! Instead of incubating, the adult plovers actually shade and cool the eggs while on the nest. Disturbing the birds can leave the eggs exposed to direct sun for too long.

    Great work on highlighting one of the South Carolina Threatened species that call Dewees “home.”

    Best regards,
    Jonathan

  2. Ex-Deweesian

    Also, the designated shorebird nesting areas–utilizing poles, signs, string, and flagging tape–were constructed with input and training from the Huntington Beach State Park Biologist. The highly visible markers are necessary for deterring dog owners, boaters, and beachcombers from trampling eggs.

    Take care!

    J

Leave a Reply