Bird of the Week: Black Turnstone


The Black Turnstone is the drabber cousin of last week’s Ruddy Turnstone.

Black Turnstone, Chevak, Alaska

Black Turnstone, Chevak, Alaska

The Black Turnstone is a North American bird, breeding only on the western shore of Alaska. It winters along the Pacific coast, as far north as Kodiak Island and as far south as Baja California.

This little 9.25 inch bird is about as belligerent as a shorebird gets. WC has watched them attack a Long-tailed Jaeger, a bird four times its size, screeching defiance the whole time. Unlike other shorebirds, presented with a threat, even an innocent photographer, a Black Turnstone runs directly at the threat, in a hunched-over posture. Which this guy did.

Black Turnstone, Chevak, Alaska

Black Turnstone, Chevak, Alaska

Unlike the Ruddy Turnstone, the Black Turnstone incessantly flips over detritus looking for food.

For more bird photos, please visit Frozen Feather Images.

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