Sunday, 17 April 2016

Kentish Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus)

Latin Etymology: Charadrius (a bird named in the Vulgate Bible) alexandrinus ("of Alexandria")
Breeding pair of Kentish Plover (subspecies C. a. alexandrinusat Laguna del Longar, Spain - April 2016

Featured Subspecies: Charadrius alexandrinus alexandrinus
Weight: 35-45g  /  Length: 15-17cm  /  Wingspan: 42-45cm
NO UK STATUS IUCN Red List: Least Concern

The Kentish Plover is a bird whose name is a relic; while this species used to breed in the UK, and notably Kent, that has not been the case for a long time now.  The last continuous breeding ended in the 1940s with it's extinction in the British Isles.  Which is somewhat odd in the context that this remains a fairly widespread breeding species across the coastline of Europe - even on the direct opposite side of the channel.  While broadly a coastal species, it is also found at certain more saline inland sites, such as the Laguna del Longar where I saw them.  Very widely distributed, they are found around the majority of the coast of Eurasia and North Africa - had I been at suitable sites I would have encountered this species easily on my trips to Japan.  

Related Species:
Family: Charadridae
Genus: Charadrius
Subspecies: C. a. alexandrinus, C. a. nivosus, C. a. tenuirostis

 - Sighting Locations -
SPAIN - Spanish - Chorlitejo patinegro - "Black-footed Plover"
Locally Common Resident
 - MADRID 2016 TRIP: Common at Laguna del Longar  (at least ten birds, many in pairs)

Further Notes: BirdForum OpusIUCN Red ListRSPB, Wikipedia, Xeno-canto

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