Wilson's PloverCharadrius wilsonia Ord
Status Eight or nine records. A summer adult from Halifax is mentioned in the Catalogue of Birds of the British Museum (1896, Vol. 24, p. 216). The first well documented record is of a female taken at Brier Island on 28 April 1880 (Goss 1885). There are no twentieth-century records until 1971, when one was tentatively identified on Cape Sable Island on 12 September (B.K. Doane). The next year, one was photographed by Ian A. McLaren on Sable Island on 2 April, and two more were well studied by Benjamin K. Doane on Cape Sable Island on 8 October. One was found on Seal Island on 17-19 May 1975 (photographed by S.I. Tingley), another was at Beach Meadows Beach, Queens County, on 14 May 1977 (F.L. Lavender), one was on Seal Island on 26-28 May 1984 (E.L. Mills et al., photos), and another was at Conrad Beach, Halifax County on 13-14July 1984 (F.L. Lavender, D. Currie).
Remarks Slightly larger (at 18-20 cm) than the Semipalmated Plover, it has a much heavier, longer black bill and pinkish gray legs. This bird breeds coastally from New Jersey and Baja California southward, wandering north casually. Conservation measures and a growing number of competent observers account for the recent increase in records; even so, most records are from islands at the extremities of the province.
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Photo courtesy of Patuxent Wildlife Research Center