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Egyptian Plover

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About the Egyptian Plover

Also known as: Crocodile Bird

The Egyptian Plover is a wader, also called Crocodile Bird for its symbiotic relationship with crocodiles. According to a story dating to Herodotus, the plovers fly into crocodiles' mouths so as to feed on bits of decaying meat that are lodged between the crocodiles' teeth.

Egyptian Plover is a localised resident in tropical sub-Saharan Africa. It breeds on sandbars in large rivers. It is a striking and unmistakable species. It is a very tame bird found in pairs or small groups near water. The call is a high-pitched krrr-krrr-krrr.

Details & Stats

Hatched Added to Birdorable on: 16 March 2007
Scientific Name Pluvianus aegyptius
  • Charadriiformes
  • Charadriidae
  • Pluvianus
  • P. aegyptius
Birdorable Family Plovers & Shorebirds
Conservation Status Least Concern
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
(as of 28 March 2017)
Measurements
Units: Imperial Metric
7.5 to 8.3 inches
Range West Africa Central Africa East Africa

International Names

  • Běhulík Pestrý (Czech)
  • Krokodillevogter (Danish)
  • Krokodilwachter (Dutch)
  • Krokotiilinvartija (Finnish)
  • Pluvian Fluviatile (French)
  • Rosenköpfchen (German)
  • Guardiano dei Coccodrilli (Italian)
  • ナイルチドリ (Nairuchidori) (Japanese)
  • Krokodillevokter (Norwegian)
  • Pijawnik (Polish)
  • Pluvial (Spanish)
  • Krokodilväktare (Swedish)

Related articles

The myth of the Crocodile Bird

The myth of the Crocodile Bird

The Egyptian Plover is a beautiful species of wader that lives in parts of sub-Saharan Africa. Despite the common name, their present range does not extend to any part of Egypt. The ... more