Satiating The Taste For Adventure: Piping Plover In Barnegat Light Field Trip

Smells like adventure, and itty bitty plover
Smells like adventure, and itty bitty plover

Piping Plover are without a doubt the cuttiest-dootiest, and the most endangered, bird on LBI. We can relate to them because they are true beach goers and like to raise their young on the beach, just like us. And also just like us they are annoyed by crowds, loss of habitat, and gulls. But Piping Plover turn out to be pretty crappy parents, and are known to bail on their kids at the first sign of trouble at the nest. Mostly trouble from humanz. Annoying humanz drive us off the beach too, the difference is, we take our kids with us.

Put it all together and you have a super dicey situation for the poor Piping Plover. That’s why this Fourth of July an extra frantic & heroic effort was made to erect more protective fencing because it’s rumored there are some healthy chicks running up & down at the Lighthouse.

Protecting The Itty Bitties
Protecting The Itty Bitties

If you ask me, the real danger is “pocketing”; i.e. putting the itty bitty chicks in your pocket to take home with you. I strongly suggest you seat yourself before you click this link to a Google Image Search for “Piping Plover Chicks”. EEEGADDDDS! If that’s not one of the cutest things you’ve ever seen, then you need to get your eyes and your heart checked. Here they are again: Google Image Search for “Piping Plover Chicks”. AWWWWW! LOOK AT A LITTLE CHICK! WHO’S A GOOD LITTLE BOY? WHO’S A GOOD LITTLE GIRL? YOU ARE LITTLE CHICKY! YOU ARE!

The bird I came to see. You're not being a bad, selfish parent, are you?
The bird I came to see. You’re not being a bad, selfish parent, are you?

Sadly, even with my longest lens there were no chicks or nests visible from the perimeter. But rest assured I’m begging at every opportunity to a get a guide to take me close enough that we can take some Official Piping Plover Chick Readings.

I did see Osprey, collecting sticks. (Osprey, are you jealous after all the attention you got on Osprey Hero day?)
I did see Osprey, collecting sticks. (Osprey, this post is about Piping Plover. Are you jealous after all the attention you got on Osprey Hero day?)
Also saw the dead Gannet. RIP little buddy. So sad. So far from home.
Also saw this dead Gannet. RIP little buddy. So sad. So far from home.

If someone can get my camera within range of these itty bitty cuties, I promise to try not to pocket any.