Piping Plover Love Triangle unfolding – Papa ‘EP’ has come home, so have others!

Piping Plover Love Triangle unfolding – Papa ‘EP’ has come home, so have others!

Male EP Puffed up in protection mode
Male EP Puffed up in protection mode

Breaking ‘exciting’ News:
CONFIRMED: Friday April 24, 2015.
We have confirmed – with pics – that Papa Piping Plover of 2014 has returned to our White Point Beach for the 2015 season – but there is a Plover Love Triangle unfolding….

Earlier this morning, our suspicions were confirmed to be correct. The Piping Plover spotted earlier this week, with a noticeable band on his upper right leg, is in fact ‘EP’. ‘EP’ is the Papa of our nesting family of 4 of 2014. E4 (wintered in the Bahama’s), E2 (wintered in Cuba), ET and EL are his children whom we are hoping will be sighted soon!

We have also confirmed, ‘EP’ is courting a lovely and very pretty female Piping Plover, whom we believe is Mama Plover of 2014.

BUT he’s got some competition for the lovely lady from an unbanded male.

Today, our GM Joanne Veinotte headed out with her camera, accompanied by our Piping Plover point person here at White Point, horticulturalist Wendy Coolen.

Observing Papa Plover (EP) fluffing up his feather, chasing the other male and making a racket to scare him off, it was a rare and very special experience for them both. Wendy says “It was quite a sight to witness in person. Seeing ‘EP’ defend his territory, and his lady, it was difficult not to get emotional in light of our history together in 2014. ‘EP’ is such an important part of our White Point family now.”

We can’t tell you how thrilled we are to have our Papa back, and while it’s great to have another male on our beach … to be very honest, in this Plover Love Triangle, we are all cheering for Papa Plover ‘EP’ to win the heart of our little lady. We have to get through this courtship so we can get on to nesting!

While we don’t have the sound track, here are the amazing shots Joanne was able to capture – hope you enjoy seeing them as much as we have!

Reminder: Consider joining us May 2 & 3 for our International Piping Plover Weekend.
May 2: 3 – 4:30pm, Todd Pover of Conserve Wildlife Foundation New Jersey, who spotted and reported on baby ‘E4’, will share his experience in the Bahamas with E4 and his friends, then we’ll head down the beach to see EP and friends here at White Point.
May 3: 10am – 4:30pm, International Piping Plover Day with Conserve Wildlife Foundation New Jersey, Bird Studies Canada, Environment Canada, NS Dept of Natural Resources, Piping Plover Volunteers, and us!