September 13 - 19, 2015: Issue 231

Plover Appreciation Day September 16th

Beach Nesting Birds Project Trailer

Published on 3 Sep 2015 - This is the official trailer for the upcoming release of BirdLife Australia's Beach-nesting Birds Project mini-documentary! Hear about one of Australia's most successful conservation stories.

 Plover Appreciation Day September 16th - BirdLife Australia

What is Plover Appreciation Day?

September 16th is Plover Appreciation Day. This special day is aimed at raising awareness of the plight of ground-nesting plovers around the world! Many plover species are highly threatened, largely due to their habitats being some of the most popular for human recreation, e.g. the beach, shores of lakes and wetlands, or even open grasslands. This, together with their highly camouflaged nests and cryptic behaviours, mean that humans can have major impacts on the survival of eggs and chicks, without even knowing it! The key to coexistence between people and plovers is awareness, understanding and sharing space with them. Help us save these amazing, loveable birds by participating in Plover Appreciation Day!

In Australia, the day will honour our beloved Hooded Plovers, Red-capped Plovers, Black-fronted Dotterels, Spur-winged Plovers, and overseas, Piping Plovers, Shore Plovers, Snowy Plovers, Kentish Plovers and the list goes on! If it’s a plover, we plan to appreciate it!

So what will the day entail? We have been working on two mini documentaries all about beach-nesting birds and these will be launched along with our revised and improved Education Kit on the day. Our amazing interns, Georgie and Hannah, have been working hard to produce a social media competition with a prize draw on the day, see below. Visit our Facebook (Hooded Plover BirdLife), Instagram or Twitter (birdlife_hoodie) sites!

Watch this page for exciting updates including downloadable Fact Sheets, stories about plovers across the world and events running as part of this celebration.

Competition! Closes September 16th 2015

Put yourself in a Hoodie’s shoes! Hooded Plovers are one of Australia’s most threatened birds. With a total population of less than 6000 individuals, these birds are currently listed as Vulnerable. One of the greatest threats to the Hooded Plover is disturbance from people visiting the beach. Disturbance is at its highest during their breeding season, in the spring and summer months, as it coincides with the peak period of recreational use of beaches. As a result of increased threats the Hooded Plover has just a 2.5% chance of surviving from an egg to become an adult. This is too low to ensure that young will be added to the population over time, and thus as the older birds die out, the population declines.

You can help raise awareness of their struggle for survival with just 3 easy steps.

All you need to do is:

1. Like us on social media

Facebook:  Hooded Plover 

Instagram:    birdlife_hoodie 

Twitter:   @birdlife_hoodie 

2. Download our Hoodie mask (either the wearable version 100kb  or selfie stick version

3. Upload a photo using the mask to express what it means to be ‘vulnerable’

Don’t forget to use the hashtag: #vulnerablehoodies

By participating in this national competition you will go into the draw to win some amazing prizes - including a day out in the field with the Beach Nesting Birds team! This will give you the chance to have a close up experience with a Hooded Plover and gain an insight into our recovery program.

Ask yourself, what does it mean to be ‘vulnerable’?

The aim of this competition is to use our Hooded Plover masks to anthropomorphize the plight of the birds, and their ‘Vulnerability’, by taking imaginative photos of a seemingly vulnerable situation. By using social media, we hope to increase the awareness of the threats to beach nesting birds and to further promote behaviours which will conserve and protect them.

These images can, but do not need to, have an environmental focus. An example would be an individual wearing the Hooded Plover mask and an Essendon football jumper, surrounded by a group of people in Collingwood jumpers!

Have fun, be safe (safety is imperative and unsafe images will not be accepted) and get creative to win big prizes!

Prizes will be drawn on September 16th at 3:30pm EST.

What type of Aussie Plover are you?!

Try our quiz to see which plover your personality traits most represent! This is designed to raise awareness of the different behaviours and habits of plover species in a fun and quirky way!

Click here to take the quiz


The Hooded Plover is a medium-sized sandy-brown plover. It has a black head and a white nape, and the black hindneck collar extends around and forks onto the breast. The underparts are white. The iris is dark brown, with a red eye ring. The legs are pink. Males and females are similar. Juveniles look like adults, but without the black head, hindneck and front of mantle, which are sandy-brown instead. Juvenile legs are pale orange. This species is also known as the Hooded Dotterel or Hoody. The genus name used to be Charadrius.

The Hooded Plover occurs on sandy beaches between Jervis Bay, New South Wales and the Eyre Peninsula, South Australia, as well as in Tasmania and between Esperance and Perth in south-west Western Australia.They are not abundant.