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If you’ve ever wondered why killdeer make such a shrill noise at night, consider the nature of their call. A shorebird, killdeer sing in high, repetitive tones when flying over water. This call is eerie and sad, but it doesn’t come from warnings or a desire to scare humans.
They need to protect their young against horses and cows
Killdeer are a common permanent resident of Tennessee, and their population appears to be increasing. Killdeer parents use a distraction display called the broken-wing display to keep predators away from their nests. They drag their wings and tail so that they appear unable to fly. Then they slowly move away from the nest. Once the predator is far enough away, they will return to their nest. Adult Killdeer also fluff up their feathers to repel cows and horses from their nests.
Killdeer prefer open habitats and breed from sea level to the subapline zone. The female lays four eggs, each 1.4 inches in diameter and pointed inwards. The eggs hatch in 24-28 days. The killdeer’s care of the young includes guarding the eggs, shading them, and wetting them. They also form small flocks of up to twelve birds during the winter months.
They are skilled actors
Killdeer are very good actors. They have a very convincing broken-wing act that they use to scare predators away from their nests. They also use a diversionary tactic called “fake brooding” to get their way. You may have seen them hopping on lawns and gravel, chasing insects.
Killdeer are handsome and graceful birds. Their rusty-red tail and black-and-white bands on the head and neck give them a handsome appearance. When they are thinking, they stop abruptly. These birds belong to the shorebird family, which also includes sandpipers and godwits. They can be found in several locations across North America. Although they prefer habitats near water, they breed on land.
They make noise at any time of day or year
The Killdeer makes a wide variety of noises throughout the day and year. One of these sounds is a shrill kill-deer call, which is often used in displays by males. Killdeer also make a bubbling trill when in alarm or distress. These noisy birds are often found in flocks and are attracted to rocky, gravel rooftops. They are not usually seen on mudflats, however.
The name kill-deer is derived from the Latin word vociferus, which means “to shout.” The killdeer is related to the piping plover and snowy plover. It is also related to the dotterel.
They nest near people
Killdeer are often a nuisance in the evenings, making themselves very loud and visible. These graceful plovers are often spotted in parking lots, athletic fields, and lawns. They are noisy and prone to stop in front of human activity to see if they can see something in the area. Although they are not aggressive, they can be quite loud, particularly when they are foraging.
Killdeer produce two broods a year and will protect the first brood. Their wings will be covered in orange patches during distraction displays. It is often their loud calls that cause humans to first notice them.
They feign injury to lure predators away from their nests
When predators are near a nest, the female Killdeer fakes injury to scare off the predator. She will pant for air and spread her tail feathers in order to appear unable to fly. She will also make a lot of noise in order to attract attention and distract the predator.
The killdeer’s “injured wing act” is a cunning survival strategy that helps her protect her young from predators. She will feign an injury while flying away from a predator, which causes it to change course and chase the bird away from the nest. Its feigned injury will also draw the attention of the predators, which is a good thing, because an adult Killdeer is a more nutritious meal.
Killdeer usually live alone or in small breeding pairs, although they occasionally form loose flocks outside of breeding season. Their loud, piercing call, known as a “kill-dee call,” is a way of communicating with each other and alerting other species to an incoming predator. This alarm behavior is used to attract females and deter predators from their nests.