Killdeer

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Magic Cards

Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus)

Killdeer

These birds are commonplace in appearance and not very large at a length of 10 inches, but are distinguished by piercing and oft-repeated cries of "kildee."   They breed throughout the United States and most of Canada, and winter from the central United States to South America.

The killdeer is probably the best known of the shorebirds, perhaps because of its contrasting colors and startling cry.  It is noisy and restless, like people, but most of its activities are beneficial to man.  Its food is harmful insects, particularly weevils and beetles, flies, ticks, and wondrously enough, mosquitoes and their larvae.

The four pointed eggs are marked like pebbles, and laid in an unlined depression on the ground.  Such dangerous sites as gravel roads, quarries, or even potato patches have been used.


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