Egyptian Plover (Pluvianus aegyptius)

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

The Egyptian Plover (Pluvianus aegyptius) is a bird of sub-Saharan Africa ranging from the Sahel south to Angola. Its name is slightly deceptive since the species became extinct in Egypt in the early 20th century. The birds are most common in the Sahel where they are most easily seen on sand bars of river channels, i.e. their typical habitat. Accordingly, I saw and photographed a couple of Egyptian Plovers on the banks of the Niger within the difficult to reach National Park of Upper Niger, Guinea, in March 2012. The birds were undisturbed by my presence and continued to hunt insects, mainly small butterflies, which settled on the sand bank in the thousands. The birds also lay and bury their eggs on sand bars where they are incubated by the sun and the warm sediments. Furthermore, the species is often refered to as the “crocodile bird” (or in German “Krokodilwächter”) as tales exist since ancient times that the birds pick carrion from the gaping mouths of crocodiles – a behaviour, however, which has never been documented in modern days.

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover hunting insects

Egyptian Plover hunting insects

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

Egyptian Plover

6 responses to “Egyptian Plover (Pluvianus aegyptius)

  1. I just find your blog… and I love it. You see many species I would like to see. I will follow you with happiness.

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