The Double-banded Plover is a small wader from New Zealand. The birds from the South Island of NZ migrate west to Australia over winter. They arrive in Australia around March and then depart in late August. Upon arrival they are in their drab non-breeding plumage shown below.
Early in my bird photography adventure I photographed non-breeding birds and since then I desperately wanted some shots of them in breeding plumage. I started my mission over 3 weeks in August 2013. In that time I visited Windang, Shoalhaven Heads, Culburra Beach, Burrill Lake and Lake Tabourie. I dipped every time not seeing a single bird. My good birder friend Heyn had accompanied me on one failed outing and he was brave enough to try again. Heyn picked me up at 6am on 22/8/2013 and we set off for the only place I hadn’t tried in Lake Conjola which is about 3 hours south of Sydney.
We made our way to the sand bar and with binos in hand we saw 30+ Red-capped Plovers but not a single DBP. We kept looking and we came around a sand dune and bingo 12 Double-banded Plovers in breeding plumage staring right back at us. I was extremely happy and stoked to finally see my fellow NZrs in breeding plumage. We spent the next 3 hours crawling around the beach and mud getting shots. Unfortunately we only had light for a short period of time but Heyn and I managed to get some great shots I was happy with. Thanks for looking.
Photographic Gear Used
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