RSPB
Skip navigation
Join the RSPB

Help us give nature a home from £3 a month.

Conservation status: Amber

This medium-sized member of the plover family is unusual in that the adult female is brighter than the male - an indication of their role-reversal in raising the young. Adults have largely grey-brown upperparts and bright chestnut belly, with a white chest band, throat and eyestripe, the latter contrasting with a dark cap. On spring migration they are often seen in groups, or 'trips', at traditional stopping places.

Illustrations

Overview

Latin name

Charadrius morinellus

Family

Plovers and lapwings (Charadriidae)

Where to see them

In summer found only on Scotland's high tops. Best looked for on spring and autumn migration. Spring groups are usually seen at traditional stopping points, especially in Eastern England.

When to see them

They arrive from mid-April to mid-May and leave breeding areas in July and August. Autumn passage birds are usually seen in August and September.

What they eat

Insects and worms

Population

EuropeUK breeding*UK wintering*UK passage*
-510-750 males--

Distribution

Key

Similar birds