Piping Plovers are endangered in Canada and despite extensive recovery efforts, populations in Eastern Canada (Atlantic Provinces and Magdalen Islands) continue to decline.
In 2020 there were 158 pairs in Eastern Canada, a decline from over 250 pairs just thirteen years ago. A recent Environment Canada scientific review of the Piping Plover recovery program determined threats outside of the country are likely responsible for this decline. In response to this, EC started a multi-year banding and re-sighting program undertaken with Canadian, U.S. and Caribbean partners to identify where Piping Plovers migrate and spend the winter. We need your help re-sighting and reporting observations of these banded plovers to gain knowledge of where these birds go after they leave the Eastern Canada breeding grounds.
From 2013 to 2018 Environment Canada marked 651 Piping Plover in Atlantic Canada and the Magdalen Islands with uniquely coded white or black flags.
If you see a banded Piping Plover:
A. Observe from a distance with a spotting scope or binoculars, and please try to avoid any disturbance to the bird
B. Record the following information:
- Flag colour and alphanumeric code
- Location of sighting
- Date of sighting
- Record additional notes (behaviour; if with a flock, record size and composition, etc.)
- If possible, please take a photo to include with your report
Please send your sightings to:
Research Scientist, Shorebirds Environment Canada