Remember our Evil Avian ID Quiz from last Wednesday? Here is the promised follow-up post and answer.

To review … here were the clues:

  1. Locally common in spring in the Great Plains.
  2. No subspecies.
  3. Worldwide population less than 200,000.
  4. All birds show a distinct whitish eyebrow that, in combination with the darker crown, give them a capped appearance.
  5. Posture is erect, not slouched. Movements are deliberate, head held up.
  6. Long distance migrant, migrates both by day and by night.
  7. Was split from another species in the 1990’s.
  8. During migration, find them in sod farms, plowed fields, pastures, prairie.

And …. the correct answer is American Golden-Plover. This species was split from the Pacific Golden-Plover in 1993.

All guesses were correct! Congratulations to Mike Powers, Grant McCreary, and Chrissy.

For those birding on the east coast of North America, this is a hard-to-find species, usually spotted in the fall. Mike was fortunate to find his life American Golden-Plover during the Montezuma Muckrace where else but in a newly plowed field!

References for this quiz were The Shorebird Guide by O’Brien, Crossley and Karlson and Pete Dunne’s Essential Field Guide Companion by Pete Dunne, two outstanding reference guides.

Written by Mike
Mike is a leading authority in the field of standardized test preparation, but he's also a traveler who fully expects to see every bird in the world. Besides founding 10,000 Birds in 2003, Mike has also created a number of other entertaining but now extirpated nature blog resources, particularly the Nature Blog Network and I and the Bird.