Thursday, September 5, 2013

Wild Bird Wednesday: Oystercatchers

I really love Oystercatchers. I think it has something to do with their bright coloured beaks, eyes and eye rings.

Australian Pied Oystercatcher.
The Pied Oystercatcher is black with a white breast and belly with bright orange-red bill, eye-rings, a red eye and pink legs. Young birds are similar in appearance to the adults, but lack the intense red-orange colours and are brown rather than black. The Pied Oystercatcher is shy of humans and seldom allows close approach.
The Pied Oystercatcher is found in coastal areas throughout the Australian continent except for areas of unbroken sea cliffs such as the Great Australian Bight. It prefers mudflats, sandbanks and sandy ocean beaches and is less common along rocky or shingle coastlines. (Info from Birds in Backyards)



The white breast and belly distinguish the Pied Oystercatcher from the closely related Sooty Oystercatcher, which has all black plumage.


Sooty Oystercatcher.
The Sooty Oystercatcher is a striking black shorebird with a long orange-red bill, red eye and pink legs. Young birds are duller and browner. It is often seen with the similar Pied Oystercatcher and is only found in coastal areas.
The Sooty Oystercatcher is the only all-black shorebird in Australia. It is endemic to Australia and is widespread in coastal eastern, southern and western Australia.
The Sooty Oystercatcher is strictly coastal, usually within 50 m of the ocean. It prefers rocky shores, but will be seen on coral reefs or sandy beaches near mudflats. It breeds on offshore islands and isolated rocky headlands. (Info from Birds in Backyards)




Linking up with Stewart's meme:

15 comments:

Pat Tillett said...

These cute guys have some serious beaks on them! Very nice photos Liz.

Carole M. said...

they are indeed magnificent birds Liz; I haven't seen a lot of them for myself. You got some great photos here

Gunilla B├Ąck said...

They're gorgeous birds. The colours are very beautiful.

eileeninmd said...

The Oystercatchers are cool bird, love their carrot bills. Wonderful photos!

Pete Shanley said...

Great shots Liz! The sooty in particular. Look at that eyeing!

Pete Shanley said...

Should be "eye ring"!

Lisa Gordon said...

These are wonderful, Liz!
I love those orange beaks.

stiefbeen said...

dit is prachtig zo,n hele serie spreekt op zich.

TexWisGirl said...

fine looking birds!

Bob Bushell said...

Wow, the Sooty looks just what it's called. Beautiful bird, and a great photos Liz.

Seeing Each Day said...

I know I've said it before but you are have such knowledge about bird wildlife. Thanks for imparting some of what you know. Renee.

CabinGirl said...

I, too, love oystercatchers! Such goofy looking birds with unique markings.

I've never seen either species that your profiled here - great images!

Stewart M said...

Splendid birds - I away like seeing them.

I think these Sooties are the Northern race - the area of skin around the eye is larger than on the birds 'down here'

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

Dave said...

Exceptional photography. I have just come back from S Africa where I saw the African Black Oystercatcher - very very similar to the Sooty.

Lovely Post Liz

retriever said...

Faboulous birds,Lovely shots!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...