Its winter range also extends along the U.S.-Mexican border, more extensively on the Mexican side. In courtship it makes a sound much like a far-off cow mooing. It often associates with livestock, which attract and stir up insects. The eggs in … Vegetative characteristics of 26 nest sites, all on prairie dog towns, were compared to a random sample of plots on prairie dog towns and adjacent areas. More than half of egg clutches are lost to predation or accidental trampling. On June 29, 2009 the U.S. Prairie dogs towns contain patches of bare ground, very short grass, and attract many insects. These conditions are preferred because of the climate's effect on the eggs directly, changes in predatory behavior, or changes in vegetation that can affect the mortality rates of parents. The Condor, 115 (3): 508–514. Several nest scrapes are made, only one is used. Plovers eat small invertebrates, and their foraging style is what sets them apart from other shorebirds. In 1832 American naturalist John Kirk Townsend spotted a species of unknown bird near the Rocky Mountains, and assumed that all these birds live in mountains. Agricultural fields provide ideal habitat for them, as long as their nests are not accidentally tilled. 22. The first bird was along the road south of the fenceline, just after the road climbs on top of the plateau. American naturalist John Kirk Townsend was the first to bring Mountain Plovers to the notice of science, in 1834, when he found one along the Sweetwater River of Wyoming. Often, they pick prairie dog towns for their nest sites. Mountain Plover. amining the contents of the nest for tiny fragments of eggshell resulting from the pipping process (Ma-bee, 1997). Mountain Plovers in Oklahoma: distribution, abundance, and habitat use. The precocial chicks leave the nest soon after hatching and remain with their parents until they join migratory and wintering flocks in early August (Harrison 1979, Knopf 1996). In Oklahoma, 90% of mapped mountain plover locations are in cultivated fields, often bare and flat. Unfortunately, these social rodents have also experienced steep population declines due to disease, poisoning, and shooting. In the construction of suitable plover habitats, more success would be found in short-grass prairie habitats. In places where prairie dogs aren't as prominent in the ecosystem, fire or grazing can act as substitutes for prairie dogs in creating suitable plover nesting because they maintain low vegetation. On featureless plain, nest is often placed close to some conspicuous object, such as a pile of cow manure. 6, Learn how and when to remove this template message, Many bird populations in trouble, report says, https://prod.nrcs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/nrcs143_022162.pdf, http://www.reporterherald.com/ci_23089051/shorebirds-land-without-shore, U.S. The mountain plover (Charadrius montanus) is a medium-sized ground bird in the plover family (Charadriidae). Plovers like to nest among prairie dog colonies because the foraging and burrowing that these animals do expose even more bare soil which creates an ideal habitat for plover nest sites. Efforts to increase nest survival provides minimal growth when compared to ensuring juvenile chick survival. After the female lays her first clutch of eggs, the male starts incubating that nest, while the female goes on to lay another clutch in a second nest. It takes five or six days to complete set of three eggs. I observed both birds almost continuously from 1-2 p.m. MDT. Nest lining (including pebbles, grass, chips of manure) added mostly during incubation. Most birds winter in California in an area of high rates of human population growth. the Mountain Plover and agricultural practices in 2003 plan to investigate Mountain Plover use of black-tailed prairie dog colonies as well (F. 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