American Golden Plover (species: Pluvialis dominica) in Monterey Bay, California (Gaia Guide)
Pluvialis dominica
American Golden Plover

©O.W. Johnson: Male, in breeding plumage

©Gregory Gard: American Golden Plover (Pluvialis dominica)

©Dominic Sherony: American Golden Plover (Pluvialis dominica)
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Charadriiformes
Family Charadriidae
Genus Pluvialis
Species Pluvialis dominica
Status least concern



Distinguishing features

Adults are spotted gold and black on the crown, back and wings. Their face and neck are black with a white border; they have a black breast and a dark rump. The legs are black. (Wikipedia)


  • Up to 30 cm (Length of specimen)


  • Up to 66 cm



©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution

Distribution and habitat preferences

The breeding habitat is Arctic tundra from northern Canada and Alaska. They are migratory and winter in southern South America. They follow an elliptical migration path; northbound birds pass through Central America about January–April and stage in great numbers in places like Illinois before their final push north. In fall, they take a more easterly route, flying mostly over the western Atlantic and Caribbean Sea to the wintering grounds in Patagonia. (Wikipedia)

Web resources


  • Simpson, K., N. Day and P. Trusler (2004). Field Guide to Birds of Australia: 7th Edition Penguin Group (Australia), Camberwell, Victoria.