Egyptian Plover
Pluvianus aegyptius

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Range and habitat:
The Egyptian plover is native to sub-Saharan Africa, lowland tropical rivers with bars of sand and gravel. This bird can often be found around human settlements near rivers.

Natural diet:
The species mainly eats insects, and it also eats worms, mollusks and seeds.

Size / weight range:
The Egyptian plover grows to be 7 to 8 inches long and weigh 45-65 g (1.6-2.3 oz)

Interesting Fact:
The climate they live in is so warm during their nesting season that Egyptian Plovers spend a good deal of the incubation period cooling their eggs rather than warming them. They accomplish this by soaking their breast feathers in water and then sitting on the eggs with dampened feathers. If parents need to leave the eggs or young chicks for any period of time, they kick sand over them for camouflage. They are sometimes called “Crocodile Birds” based on claims to have observed these plovers plucking bits of meat from the teeth of open-mouthed crocodiles. This symbiotic relationship provides food for the plovers and teeth-cleaning for the crocodiles. The Egyptian plover is listed as least concern, but it is locally threatened by habitat changes caused by damming of rivers.

Location at The Toledo Zoo:
Aviary

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