19 May 2022

Breeding Little Ringed Plover - Jubai

Whilst birding Jubail in mid-May I came across a pair of breeding Little Ringed Plovers with a small chick. This species has started to breed commonly in the Jubail area with many pairs seen daily but this is the first chock of the year that I have recorded. The chicks are very skilful at hiding when disturbed so I may have overlooked them in previous weeks. The species is an early passage migrant with small numbers seen from January through to early May, breeders remaining through the summer and more migrants arrive in August to October. A few birds stay until November and exceptionally December and they often occur on pools and lagoons sometimes well away from the coast. The prefer inland freshwater locations often well away from the coast and breed in open areas with sandy or shingle banks close to streams, freshwater and treated wastewater lagoons. Breeding numbers appear to be increasing in the Eastern Province over the last few years with birds seen in many different locations.