American Oystercatcher

American Oystercatcher

These birds are fairly shy and spend time where we can rarely get any decent photographs. However, here both Ellen and I did get to a good spot  because a boat is usually not considered a threat.

There are multiple subspecies of Oystercatchers, these are the American variation.

Living up to their name these birds were nesting on a big Oyster mound. They do eat other things, but Oysters are the main diet.

American Oystercatcher
American Oystercatcher

Colorful is a conservative description. Look at all that orange and red.

American Oystercatcher
American Oystercatcher

In order to eat an Oyster they have that unique bill, which can be slipped inside a shell when the Oyster separates enough to feed or get air. All they need is a little opening.

Below a female is sitting on a nest, a small ‘divot’ in the shell bed.

American Oystercatcher
American Oystercatcher

About 30% of all American Oystercatchers live and breed along the Lowcountry. Having any population of the birds is an important sign the waters are clean and safe. Naturalist consider them a bell weather for the health of the local environment.

American Oystercatcher
American Oystercatcher

Kiawah / Stono River, South Carolina.

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