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  Piping plover  
  (Charadrius melodus)  



The Piping Plover is a small, unassuming inhabitant of gently-sloping beaches strewn with shells and pebbles. Incidentally, it is also one of North America's most endangered bird species. In 1991, there were estimated to be only 5,500 individuals left in the world! The only Piping Plover population in Quebec nests in the Magdalen Islands. This population consists of approximately 100 individuals. The breeding success of piping plovers depends on undisturbed beaches; increased recreational use of beach areas, including the use of motorized vehicles on beaches and beachfront development, has taken a toll on this species. Young Piping Plovers from heavily used beaches were found to have higher mortality rates, possibly because they spent more time fearing for their life than they did feeding. For Quebec to do it's part in the recovery of this endangered species, it will require continued conservation and public education efforts in the Magdalen Islands and elsewhere.

  Distribution of the Piping plover in Quebec:  
  distribution map.jpg  


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