Plovers are one of the tiniest shorebirds—and taking a census of them is one giant feat.
Last summer, we asked the general public living along the East Coast to look for and report sightings of Piping Plovers with pink bands on their legs. In January 2015, a research team led by Audubon had affixed those bands to the birds while they were still wintering in the Bahamas; the researchers hoped that the distinctive bands would help them track plovers as they migrated to their breeding grounds during spring, then back to the Bahamas in the fall.
It turns out that the pink bands are pretty easy to spot, and sharp-eyed birders reported a number of plover sightings to our science team. Check out itineraries of some of the pink-banded Piping Plovers below with our interactive map! And keep your eyes peeled for others as they start to make their way back north again this year.
If you spot one, email us at BahamasPIPL@audubon.org.
Thanks in part to the efforts of Audubon's shorebird experts, the plovers' wintering grounds are now a national park.
Areas of the Bahamas where populations of the birds overwinter were decimated by the October storm.
He’s had a long life and dozens of chicks. But most importantly, he’s a symbol of prosperity for a rebounding species and region.
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