Killdeers and a Nest


For the past couple weeks, I’ve been watching a pair of Killdeer.


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It took a few days before I walked into a specific area and suddenly had one of the Killdeers screaming at me, bobbing and running, then putting on their broken-wing display.  This is the Killdeer’s defense distraction, to feign injury to lure a predator’s attention to them and away from their nest.


Killdeer feigning injury to draw my attention


Killdeer use a scrape on the ground for their nest, sometimes in gravel.

I scanned the gravel along the shed nearby.


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Do you see the nest and eggs?
(dead center)


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Killdeer Eggs


While one incubates…..

Killdeer incubating eggs



the mate stays nearby, foraging and guarding their territory.



Killdeer eggs hatch in 22-28 days.  I am hoping to see and share little ones before they vacate the nest after birth.  They look like cotton balls on stilts!



50 thoughts on “Killdeers and a Nest

    • Thank you, Jane! They do have a beautiful tail when they spread it like that. They are indeed vulnerable. I’ve already chased half dozen crows that were harassing the Killdeer, I ran at them with my arms flailing while screaming. 😅 Those crows took off and I haven’t seen them since. 😂 The Killdeer stood there and just looked at me, then walked back to the nest to brood. I think I made a friend. 😊

  1. I’m always amazed that these birds lay their eggs in gravel. Of course the eggs blend in but the gravel could be in a driveway or parking lot and easily smashed. I guess it works for them enough of the time. Thanks for sharing. These are such lovely birds, especially their wings and tail feathers in flight. I’m looking forward to seeing some babies on stilts!

  2. Very nice that they’ll have family and preserve their species. You did a wonderful job, Donna. 🙂 👍

  3. Beautiful captures Donna of a bird that looks so similar to our Black-fronted Dotteral. Interesting how they draw you away from the nest, birds are quite intelligent and able to think in ways we often marvel. People from the past (especially evolutionists) led us to falsely believe birds were stupid, but they are so wrong.

    • Thank you, Ashley! It never ceases to amaze me on the intelligence of birds, so many unique characteristics, some to just one species. Our Creator provided us such a wonderufl gift with birds and what they teach us. 😊

  4. Great photos Donna! I so hope that you get to see the chicks (and we get to see the pictures)! The ones in the Everglades only stayed in the nest for a day and then they were off to the neighboring bushes. I know you’ll keep close tabs! Awaiting your upcoming cotton balls on stilts post…

  5. Oh what lovely moments! Killdeers do not reside here so it’s a real joy to see them through your photos 🙂 I do hope the chicks will hatch safely and reach adulthood.

    • Thank you, Lisa! If you know their calls and hear their danger alerts, don’t forget to look around the gravel areas nearby, or sometimes a scrape of grass and some trash decor, you might get lucky! 🙂

        • Killdeer are year-round residents of the entire lower half of the United States, including Florida. When I left the Everglades end of March, there was a Killdeer gravel nest there with eggs, they hatched after we left, my friend got to photograph the little ones. 🙂 Home in Maryland, I’ve seen them in farm fields, miles from water. 😲

          • We just don’t see them in Jacksonville like that. They usually come in with migrating birds up here. Strange how that works. 😊

  6. Pingback: Killdeer Reflections | Photos by Donna

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