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North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects

 Black Turnstone (Arenaria melanocephala)




Black Turnstone | Arenaria melanocephala photo
Black Turnstone, San Diego La Jolla Underwater Park (Ecological Reserve), La Jolla, California

Photograph by Alan And Elaine Wilson. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

Black Turnstone | Arenaria melanocephala photo
Black Turnstone, Whiffin Spit Park, Sooke, Near Victoria, British Columbia

Photograph by Alan And Elaine Wilson. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

BLACK TURNSTONE FACTS

Description
The Black Turnstone is a shorebird with dark wedge shaped bill and dark legs. In the breeding season the adults are black above with white eye stripe, white spots on sides of neck and breast. and white underside. In the non-breeding season the back and wings are blackish brown; the head is dark brown with paler throat and pale stripe behind the eye. The wings have white stripe visible in flight, and they have a white lower back. The tail is white with black band at the tip.

Size
22cm - 25cm

Environment
sparsely vegetated areas near coastal meadows, rocky shorelines, beaches near rocky coasts, jetties, piers.

Food
Aquatic invertebrates, insects

Breeding
The nest is a shallow scrape in the ground, usually lined with leaves. It is placed in vegetation or on the ground. Lays two to five (commonly four) pale olive eggs with brown spots and blotches. Eggs hatch after about 22 to 24 days.

Range
Breeds in coastal Alaska. Winters along Pacific Coast from southern Alaska to southern Baja California in Mexico.

Classification
Class:Aves
Order:Charadriiformes
Family:Scolopacidae
Genus:Arenaria
Species:melanocephala
Common Name:Black Turnstone


Relatives in same Genus
  Ruddy Turnstone (A. interpres)