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Bird Of The Month: The Golden Plover

The Golden plover's beautiful plumage, round head and light step make them perfect photographic subjects.

| Animals / Wildlife

Bird Of The Month: The Golden Plover: Golden plover


Eschenbach's bird of the month is the Golden plover and here, we find out more about it where we should head with our cameras to photograph it. 


This species has a rounded, plump body and is about 27cm long. During the breeding season, the plover’s plumage has a yellow, brown, black and white pattern on its back. The markings reach right up to the top of the head which is isolated from the brownish face by a white line. Beak and eyes are dark, as is the throat which is framed by a white edged line and so are the tail and rump. This line also runs around the bird's black belly and the female's breeding plumage looks similar, except they don't have the dark underside. Both sexes also have a bright bottom plumage.



The Golden plover is a typical northern European bird who resides in Iceland, the British Isles, Ireland and parts of Scandinavia as well as Central Siberia. Plovers are short-distance migrant who hibernates in the Mediterranean and on the Atlantic coast. Half of European golden plover breeds can be found in Iceland (where their arrival is a sign of spring), and another quarter can be found in Norway. The pretty birds enjoy areas with low vegetation and few trees and can be spotted on mountain meadows and in open tundra landscapes. During the winter, Golden plover can also be observed on fields and farmlands as well as near rivers and coasts.



Photography Tips 

During spring and autumn, the Wadden Sea (south-eastern part of the North Sea) offers great observation opportunities. It is not uncommon to have up to 40,000 Golden plover around the Wadden Sea (Denmark) and the coast of Schleswig-Holstein (Germany), even if they are less frequent on the German side.

The Golden plover likes shallow bog surfaces as it likes to move on foot, picking insects, worms and snails from the ground. With its pointed beak, it can stick it in the mud and pull earthworms vertically out of the ground. During the food search, he frequently they quickly back and forth across the meadow, with pauses.

Pairs build their nests in shallow ground recesses with only a little padding. The eggs are protected from intruders by a parent and when it notices a troublemaker, it runs away to lure the intruder behind him. Even if the chicks can look out for themselves after hatching, the parents accompany them for their first time out the nest.

To help you spot the Golden plover more easily, you'll need to invest in a good pair of binoculars such as those manufactured by Eschenbach which can be purchased from Amazon via the below buttons.

 Eschenbach Binoculars  Eschenbach Binoculars

Even More Birds

Other birds Eschenbach has talked about include the Bee-Eater, Curlew and Rare Bittern

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