Ringed Plover

Irish Name: Feadóg chladaigh
Scientific name: Charadrius hiaticula
Bird Family: Plovers
Conservation status


Resident & winter visitor from areas further north where this population also breeds (Iceland, the Baltic & southern Scandinavia). Peak numbers between August and early October, and then numbers decline slightly (passage birds move further south) and stabilise between November and January.


Compact, small wader, similar in size to Dunlin. Grey-brown upperparts and white underparts. Adults with orange bill with black tip in summer, which is mostly black in winter, orange legs, black ring widens as it extends across the chest. White throat and across the back of the neck. Prominent white wing-bar in flight.


Mellow 'choo-ee'. Alarm is sharp 'peep', song repeated rythmic, mellow 'tee-too-e' and hurried and repeated 't'weea-t'.


Hunts visually, scanning the area for signs of movement which indicate potential prey. It feeds on a variety of invertebrates, particularly polychaete worms and crustaceans. Characteristic plover feeding action - short run along ground, pause, bend to pick up food item followed by another run.


Mostly coastal breeding distribution, preferring to nest on exposed wide sandy or shingle beaches. Some breed inland, particularly in the west, where their preferred nesting habitat is on short-grazed pasture beside rivers and along lake


Winter around the entire coastline, but are quite sparse along the north and southeast coasts. Mostly recorded along sandy stretches or along the upper shores of estuaries and non-estuarine coastline

Monitored by

Irish Wetland Bird Survey.

Similar Species

Little Ringed Plover

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