New Zealand Dotterel

New Zealand Dotterel
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Charadriiformes
Family: Charadriidae
Genus: Charadrius
Species: C. obscurus
Binomial name
Charadrius obscurus
Gmelin, 1789

The New Zealand Dotterel, Red-breasted Plover, or New Zealand Plover (Charadrius obscurus) is an endangered species found only in certain areas of New Zealand. Its Māori names include Tūturiwhatu, Pukunui, and Kūkuruatu. It is related to the Eurasian dotterel.

New Zealand Dotterels are shorebirds and are usually found on sandy beaches and sandspits or feeding on tidal estuaries.

Dotterels are nearing extinction with about 1300 northern dotterels, and approximately 75 or so southern dotterels.

Mature male New Zealand Dotterel


New Zealand Dotterel nest with two eggs

Parents lay eggs in the spring and summer. They nest on beaches above the high tide mark, and the nest is just a shallow hole dug in the ground, not made of twigs like a nest in a tree. The chicks hatch about 28 days after the eggs have been laid. Because the nests are on the ground, chicks can walk the day they hatch and can usually fly within 6-8 weeks.


  • BirdLife International (2006). Charadrius obscurus. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. Retrieved on 11 May 2006. Database entry includes a range map and justification for why this species is endangered

External links

Media related to Charadrius obscurus at Wikimedia Commons