On October 1st, it was a gorgeously sunny day for strolling under blue skies along the sandy shores of Kokanee Creek Park. The bees were buzzing, corvids cawing, and gulls were feistily feeding on fish. But it was a lone, and possibly lonesome shorebird that caught my attention. 

Standing at the end of a sandy point was a bird with bright yellowish-gold flecks on its crown and wings. I suspect this bird is a migrating golden-plover.

When I first observed it,  the bird was standing still and looking around. Then it would walk or scurry a few steps and pause again, occasionally bending over to peck its beak into the sand to acquire food. Apparently, golden-plovers really like to eat insects and invertebrates, although they won’t refuse berries and seeds.

It also seemed quite happy wading in Kootenay Lake as it searched for food.

After perusing Sibley, Cornell’s All About Birds, and iNaturalist, my father and I think this bird’s markings are most consistent with a juvenile American Golden-Plover as opposed to the primarily coastal Pacific Golden-Plover. However, neither are common migrants through this area, so I am wondering what others think? I also wonder if this is the first recorded visit of a golden-plover to Kokanee Creek Park?


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6 Responses to Golden-Plover

  1. Mary McQueen says:

    Great pictures and pretty bird

  2. Carlo says:

    Remarkable shots of a super find! This is a slam-dunk American GP. If you look at the back end of the bird in the first two images, you can see the tips of four or five plain primary feathers that are visible beyond the decorative tertial feathers. American GP shows 3-5 primary tips, whereas Pacific GP would only show 1-3. A diagnostic field mark, often difficult to observe, but shows superbly in your photos.

  3. Stephen Wells says:

    I’m no expert, but using your photos, personally I concur with you. Beautiful photos in any event!

  4. DENYSE E MORIN says:

    Great photos Cynthia.

  5. Karen Pidcock says:

    I just think, “How good Cynthia was there to capture for us all to see this plover to enjoy its beauty!!”

    I’m so fond of shorebirds…this one’s look is priceless.


  6. Paul P. says:

    Congrats, Cynthia. Beautiful photos of a very special shorebird.

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