Sunday, March 10, 2013

It's not a killjoy, but a killdeer

A visit to Carvins Cove brought this interesting bird to us. Seeing it reminded us of a sandpiper, with its spindly legs and long beak. Not being a proper birder, but still interested in birds, we decided to look it up when we got home! We found out it is indeed a plover, a "Charadrius vociferus"  which is commonly called a Killdeer.
Not super camouflaged, but we did see him!
Can you see him now?
A shorebird you can see without going to the beach, Killdeer are graceful plovers common to lawns, golf courses, athletic fields, and parking lots. These tawny birds run across the ground in spurts, stopping with a jolt every so often to check their progress, or to see if they've startled up any insect prey. Their voice, a far-carrying, excited kill-deer, is a common sound even after dark, often given in flight as the bird circles overhead on slender wings.

Learn more about this bird here, on the ALL ABOUT BIRDS website by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Being at a mountain lake, it was easier to identify this "shore bird" for us.
Carvins Cove is less than 8 miles from Downtown Roanoke
Trail map at Carvins Cove
Carvins Cove Nature Reserve is the second largest municipal park in the nation. It holds a major water source within its 12,700 acres and overflowing recreational opportunities including hiking, biking, fishing, and boat rentals. 11,363 acres of Carvins Cove is protected by the largest conservation easement in Virginia's history. (Click here to learn more about the history of Carvins Cove).

The Carvins Cove Natural Reserve is managed for watershed protection and public recreation, including hiking, fishing, boating, and equestrian use by Roanoke City Parks & Recreation. The property is located near Interstate 81 and borders 14 miles of the Appalachian Trail. The rock outcrop at nearby McAfee Knob, which overlooks the conserved property, is one of the most frequently visited and photographed panoramas on the Appalachian Trail.

With more than 40 miles of trails and an 800-acre reservoir Carvins Cove is a mountain biking, hiking, horseback riding, fishing, and boating paradise. 

Do you plan on spotting some migratory birds this spring? Please share any images and info with us!

1 comment:

  1. if you get too close to their nests, which are usually on the ground, they will try to "lure" you away from it by pretending to be "hurt". they will walk away from you with a loud noise and pretend their wing is hurt. So much fun to watch


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