|Irish Name:||Feadóg bhuí|
|Scientific name:||Pluvialis apricaria|
Summer visitor from France & Iberia (though possibly some remain year-round in Ireland) & winter visitor from Iceland. Most in Ireland between October & February
Smaller than Grey Plover, with narrower, more pointed wings. Golden brown upperparts, which look grey at close range. Males in summer have more black below than females - extends from throat, towards each eye, and ventrally under neck, chest and belly. In winter, males and females similar in appearence, with no black underparts.
Flat whistle 'puu' in flight or when alarmed. Rythmic song 'pu-pee-oo' repeated in display flight, often followed by a repeated 'perpurrlya' when alighting, or when on the ground.
Feed on a variety of soil and surface-living invertebrates, principally beetles and earthworms, but also on plant material such as berries, seeds and grasses. They regularly feed in association with Lapwing & Black-headed Gulls.
Breed in heather moors, blanket bogs & acidic grasslands. Distribution limited to the uplands of northwest counties in Ireland.
Throughout the winter, Golden Plovers are regularly found in large, densely-packed flocks, and in a variety of habitats, both coastal and inland. Their distribution is widespread in Ireland.
Irish Wetland Bird Survey.
Breeding in upland blanket bogs in Ireland, predominantly of the West.
Numbers boosted by incoming Winter migrants. Ballymacoda in County Cork and Little Brosna Callows in County Offaly regularly support >10,000 birds. Strangford Lough in County Down, Rahasane Turlough in County Galway and Tralee Bay, Lough Gill & Akeragh Lough in County Kerry are other important wintering sites (7,000-10,000 birds).