Snowy Plover at the North Beach of Fort De Soto

/, Florida, Fort De Soto County Park, Pinellas County, Snowy Plovers/Snowy Plover at the North Beach of Fort De Soto

Snowy Plover wing lift after bathingSnowy Plover wing lift after bathing – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/1000, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 400mm, natural light

When I was at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge on the 12th of April I spotted a Snowy Plover way out on the flats and that thrilled me because it was only my second sighting since my move to Utah back in 2009.

I didn’t see Snowy Plovers in Florida all that often but when I did they always excited me. There are two subspecies of Snowy Plovers, those who breed in the eastern U.S. and those that breed in the western U.S., the western subspecies that breeds near the Pacific coast are on the decline and listed as threatened. Snowy Plovers are on the 2016 State of the Birds Watch List. Climate change, eroding coastlines and disturbance caused by humans are among the causes for the decline in the Snowy Plover populations.

Snowy Plovers will often have two broods per year, sometimes even three. The females will leave the males with the chicks and go off to find new mates for the second and/or third broods.

Here in Utah the Snowy Plovers nest out on alkali flats and salt flats near the Great Salt Lake and its surrounding marshlands.

I photographed the Snowy Plover above while it was bathing near a tidal lagoon at the north beach of Fort De Soto County Park, Pinellas County, Florida in December of 2008. While it was bathing the plover had its back to me so I was pleased when it turned around to lift its wings and shake off the water.

I keep hoping that I will find and be able to photograph a Snowy Plover close enough to get nice images here in Utah, so far I haven’t had that chance. Maybe this year.

Life is good.



  1. Mia McPherson April 30, 2017 at 5:58 am

    Thanks for your comments, they are much appreciated.

    Tim, I love the Piping Plovers too.

    Patty, I worry about the birds, people and nature under the current administration too. What the hell does he care about things he is too ignorant to understand.

  2. Elephants Child April 29, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    What a complete charmer.
    Like Patty the ever growing lists of endangered species hurts my heart.

  3. Patty Chadwick April 29, 2017 at 9:17 am

    Any tlime I hear that some bird or other animal is on tlhe decline, it deeply, deeply saddens me..and I’be been hearing that more and more frequently. It reminds me of Rachel Carson’s predictions and of the book THE LAST OF THE CURLEWS,which broke my heart. With the environmentally obtuse numbnuts we have in the White House, I am extremely concerned…for all creatutes, ourselves included.

  4. Bob mcphersonops April 29, 2017 at 7:45 am

    Beautiful image, Mia.

  5. pennypinchadventure Tim Traver April 29, 2017 at 6:19 am

    So similar to our Piping Plover, just now nesting here and there on our dune/marsh/beach interface at Black Beach West Falmouth. “Sippewisssett Marsh, or Life on a Salt Marsh.”

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