Wild Florida Photo - Pluvialis squatarola - Black-bellied Plover

Pluvialis squatarola (Linnaeus, 1758)

Black-bellied Plover

Florida native

Volusia Co. FL 05/05/11
Sarasota Co. FL 10/16/19
Volusia Co. FL 05/05/11
Volusia Co. FL 05/05/11

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Black-bellied plovers can be found in coastal areas of Florida except during the summer. Other non-breeding range includes the coasts of the United States, Mexico, Central America and all except the most southern tip of South America. Summer breeding occurs in the Artic tundra of Alaska, Canada and Eurasia. During migration they can be found on the coast in the rest of Canada and practically any non-mountainous portion of the United States.
These are the largest plovers with a body length of 28-29cm (11 to 11.4 in.) and a wingspan of 59-60cm (23.2 to 23.6 in.). All ages and sexes have distictive black 'armpits' that are visible in flight and stout black bills and dark grey to black legs. The breeding plumage of males is striking, with a black face extending down onto the belly. The back has a white and black pattern. The crown of the head, nape of the neck and undertail are white. Breeding females are marked similarly, but muted, having less contrast. Non-breeding adults are pale gray above and whitish to grayish below. Juveniles are similar to non-breeding adults, but covered with a smallish scale-like pattern.


Pluvialis squatarola is a member of the Charadriidae - Plovers and Lapwings family.

For more information on this species, visit the following link:
Cornell Lab of Ornithology All About Birds page for this species

Date record last modified: Nov 19, 2023

Paul Rebmann Nature Photography at pixels.com