Little Ringed Plover - Charadrius dubius

Alternative names
Little Plover

The species is known affectionately amongst birders as 'LRP'. The adults have a grey-brown back and wings, a white belly, and a white breast with one black neckband. They have a brown cap, white forehead, a black mask around the eyes with white above, a short dark bill and flesh-coloured legs.

LRPs differ from the larger Ringed Plover in leg colour, the head pattern and the presence of a clear yellow eye- ring. Unmistakable in flight, they display uniform wings: the absence of any white wing bar immediately distinguishing them from the Ringed Plover.

Identification difficulty

The breeding habitat is open gravel areas near freshwater, including gravel pits, islands, river edges and reservoir margins, nesting in a small depression on the ground on stones with little or no plant growth. Both sexes take turn to incubate the eggs.

When to see it

Arrives in the UK in March and leaves again in late June and July.

Life History

Before the 1930s the Little Ringed Plover was a rare vagrant to Britain, but its liking for breeding in gravel pits and on the shores of man-made reservoirs has lead to a remarkable spread in abundance.

UK Status

Migrant Breeder (about 1,000 pairs), Passage Visitor

VC55 Status

Uncommon migrant breeder (probably 15 to 20 pairs) and passage visitor.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map