One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A short-billed gregarious wading bird, typically found by water but sometimes frequenting grassland, tundra, and mountains.
Family Charadriidae (the plover family): several genera and numerous species, especially the ringed plovers (Charadrius), grey and golden plovers (Pluvialis), and lapwings (Vanellus)
- ‘Sandpipers and plovers of many species will pass through or decide to stay in the ponds and wetlands that dot central and southern Iraq.’
- ‘The Semipalmated Plover is a small plover with a short bill and yellow-orange legs.’
- ‘When returning to Breydon shortly after high water, the great flights of plovers often arrive at a considerable height.’
- ‘Like other plovers, Black-bellied plovers are visual feeders, but they may also probe for hidden prey.’
- ‘Among some ground-nesting waterbirds, such as gulls and plovers, research has shown that speckling aids egg camouflage.’
- ‘The swallow may fly south with the sun or the house martin or the plover may seek warmer climes in winter, yet these are not strangers to our land?’
- ‘Along the perimeter I saw an unusual number of crested larks and a few red-wattled plovers in a recently flooded field.’
- ‘Currently, visitors to the flats are likely to see sandpipers, avocets, oystercatchers, godwits, dowitchers, plovers and other shorebirds on their way south.’
- ‘These plovers are found mostly on the outer coast.’
- ‘In Scotland, gamekeepers blame the buzzard, a protected bird, for the deaths of thousands of partridges, pheasants, and waders such as curlews and plovers.’
- ‘When we arrived, it was past the peak of the fall shorebird migration, but there were still hundreds of sandpipers and plovers resting and feeding.’
- ‘In the mud flats of the Bay of Fundy, you'll see large roosts of shorebirds - plovers, yellowlegs, godwits, curlews, and phalaropes - at high tide.’
- ‘However, to keep these teeth pearly white, the crocodiles employ the services of spur winged plovers that pick the pieces of meat left between the crocodile's teeth after a large meal.’
- ‘At the second pond I found a magpie hopping around near the water, some red-wattled plovers in the field, and a few Dead Sea Sparrows carrying nesting material.’
- ‘Beginning in 1988, to the chagrin of many locals, the refuge closed down two and a half miles of prime beach during the spring and summer to protect the plovers during their breeding season.’
- ‘But managing the moors for the grouse also preserves them for the plovers and Merlin.’
- 1.1 Used in names of birds similar to the plover in other families, e.g. Egyptian plover.
- ‘There were a dozen black-winged stilts, two spur-winged plovers, a common sandpiper and my new life bird, a great snipe.’
- ‘Birds such as the sanderling, white-fronted plover and many others are dependent on these creatures as well as being themselves dependent on the biome.’
- ‘It already attracts birds - paradise and mallard ducks, spur-winged plovers and welcome swallows.’
- ‘Such behavior is unique among the Pluvialis plovers and unusual among shore - birds in general.’
Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French, based on Latin pluvia ‘rain’.
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