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8

Ruddy Turnstone

(Arenaria interpres)
Alternate name(s): "Turnstone", "Beach-bird"
Size: 21-26 cm; wing span 50-57 cm
Weight: 85-190 g
Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Ruddy Turnstone at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

Race "interpres"

ADULT

BREEDING

"Assortment" of waders, with two Lesser Sandplovers in near-breeding plumage (centre and front left), one Ruddy Turnstone in breeding plumage (front right), a second Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage (front centre), one Greater Sand Plover in breeding plumage (centre right) and a second Greater Sand Plover in non-breeding plumage (towards the back right); on the right and front right there are also two Red-necked Stints (the smallest birds in the photo) in non-breeding plumage (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Lee Point, Darwin, NT, March 2013]

NON-BREEDING

Near-frontal view of a Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Near-lateral view of a Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Close-up lateral view of a Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Lateral view of a Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Lateral view of a Ruddy Turnstone walking along a beach
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Lateral view of two Ruddy Turnstones in near-breeding plumage foraging on rocky soil (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)
[Government Lake, Rottnest Island, WA, February 2016]

Ruddy Turnstone stretching one of its wings, thereby displaying the upperwing pattern
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Lateral view of Ruddy Turnstones in non-breeding plumage in flight (photo courtesy of M. Mearns)
[Lady Elliot Island, near Agnes Water, QLD, January 2016]

Dorsal view of Ruddy Turnstones in flight (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Lord Howe Island, November 2014]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Direct comparison of a Ruddy Turnstone in non-breeding plumage (back) and an immature bird (front); note how the young bird is greyer than the non-breeding adult, which shows more brown tints and more black on the breast
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Behaviour

Ruddy Turnstones like to roost in small flocks, often together with other waders.

Ruddy Turnstones resting
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

Food, Diet

Ruddy Turnstones feed mostly on molluscs and small crustacians and during the breeding season also insects.

Ruddy Turnstone digging up a small crustacian
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

The animal is dragged out of the sand...
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

... picked up ...
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

... and finally swallowed
[Bundjalung NP, NSW, February 2012]

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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