Friday, March 12, 2010

First Bahamas Piping Plover Re-sighted!!

Today at Little Talbot Island, Duval County, FL, Pat and Doris Leary re-sighted and photographed the first marked Bahamas Piping Plover. The Learys are devoted shorebirders and have re-sighted untold numbers of marked waterbirds in Florida for many years.

The plover was captured and marked on February 17 on a sand flat near South Blanket Sound, Andros Island and was the last of the 57 birds banded in The Bahamas in the 2010 Environment Canada/Bahamas National Trust project. It is ~440 air miles from the Andros capture location to Little Talbot Island.

At Andros the bird was aged as after-second-year and was sexed as likely male. Today's picture shows that the definitive pre-alternate molt has proceeded by the distinct black forehead and breast band, together with the orange base to the bill. The band combination is upper left leg black flag, lower leg black over orange; upper right leg no band, lower left white.

Please be alert for banded Piping Plovers as they migrate to their breeding grounds this spring. They are coming; more will arrive soon.

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