The Killdeer, Charadrius vociferus, is a medium-sized plover with a brown back and wings, a white belly, and a white breast with two black bands. The rump is tawny orange and the face and cap are brown with a white forehead.
They breed in open fields or lawns, often quite far from water, across most of Canada, the United States, and Mexico, with isolated populations in Costa Rica and Peru. They nest on the ground in an open area with a clear line of sight, or sometimes even on a gravel roof.
They are migratory in northern areas and winter as far south as northern South America. They are rare vagrants to Western Europe, usually late in the year.
These birds forage for mainly insects in fields, mudflats, and shores, usually by sight.
Their name comes from their call, frequently heard. These birds will frequently use the “broken wing act” to distract predators from their nests. Their ability to exploit a wide range of agricultural and semi-urban habitat has helped keep them common and widespread in their range.