Nebraska Ornithologists' Union


Date of this Version



Dinsmore, "Snowy Plovers in the Rainwater Basin," from Nebraska Bird Review (June 1996) 64(2).


Copyright 1996, Nebraska Ornithologists' Union. Used by permission.


While conducting shorebird surveys in the Rainwater Basin of southcentral Nebraska in spring, 1995, I observed two Snowy Plovers (Charadrius alexandrinus). Both sightings were on 6 May, one at the Kissinger Basin Wildlife Management Area in Clay County, and the other at Ayr Lake in Adams County.

When I arrived at Kissinger Basin WMA, the weather was poor with steady rain and strong, northeast winds. At 8:15 a.m. I noticed a pale plover feeding on the far side of the wetland. I noted the black bill and legs, dark auricular patch, and slender appearance, and I identified the bird as a Snowy Plover. It was smaller and slimmer than a nearby Semipalmated Plover. The mantle and upperwings were very pale-brown and contrasted with the white underparts.