Arenaria interpres   (Linnaeus,  1758) (Bird)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Aves

Image copyrights: Pbase

Size: They are 21 to 26 cm long, weighing from 84 and 190 g, and a wingspan of 50 to 57 cm.

Voice: Metallic twitter.

Habits: Occurs in small flocks, runs actively on sandy banks, often forages by turning over pebbles and shells.

Sexes alike. Dark brown and white wader with glistening white chin and throat, straight conical black bill and orange-red legs. Non-breeding (winter): Upperparts dark brown and white, lower back, rump and tail-coverts white, the last with a dark brown cross-bar, tail dark with white tip, foreneck and sides of breast brown, remaining underparts including chin and throat pure white. Breeding (summer): Head white streaked with black on crown, a black band from forehead to eye, a black patch below eye, upperparts chiefly black and deep rufous, foreneck and sides of breast black, remaining underparts white.

Breeding Season: Ruddy turnstones arrive on the breeding grounds in late May and early June and establish pair bonds within 7 to 10 days of their arrival and create a nest scrape lined with leaves and lichen and begin laying eggs within a few days after that, usually by mid-June. Egg laying is influenced by the availability of prey and may be delayed if there isn't enough animal foods. Females lay 1 egg each day for the first 3 eggs, with other eggs laid at 1 to 2 day intervals. Locally, females are highly synchronous in egg-laying. Clutches are completed by late June and incubation begins at the 3rd egg laid. Clutches are from 2 to 5, but usually 4, dark brown or olive splotched eggs and incubation is 21 to 24 days long.

Lifespan/Longevity: The longest lifespan for ruddy turnstones in the wild is an individual that lived to 19.7 years.

Synonym (s)
Tringa interpres (Linnaeus, 1758)

Common Name (s)
• Ruddy Turnstone (English)
• Turnstone (English)
• Kachabarangi (Gujrati)
• Kal purratti (Tamil)
• Tirakkata (Malayalam)
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Ecosystem balance
(Ruddy turnstones are important predators of insects and other invertebrates in their tundra breeding habitats and crustaceans and mollusks in coastal habitats at other times of the year. There are few parasites recorded in ruddy turnstones, only some records of nematode infections.)
Threats:  Natural threats
(The species suffers nest predation from feral American mink Neovison vison in some regions and is susceptible to avian influenza so may be threatened by future outbreaks of the virus.)

Habitat:  Rocky, Sandy, Muddy, Coastal
Trophic Level:  Consumer
Prey:  Carnivorous, comprising small crabs, molluscs, crustaceans and marine worms.
Predator:  Known Predators long-tailed jaegers (Stercorarius longicaudus) parasitic jaegers (Stercorarius parasiticus) glaucous gulls (Larus hyperboreus) common ravens (Corvus corax) arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) Eurasian sparrow-hawks (Accipiter nisus) peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) merlins (Falco columbarius) owls (Strigiformes)
IUCN Status:  Least Concern


• Lakshadweep Islands (Lat: 11.00) (Long: 72.50) INDIA
• Andaman & Nicobar Islands INDIA
• Goa, Morjim beach INDIA (Record: 12/09/1982)
• Goa, Keri beach INDIA
• Goa, Chapora Estuary INDIA
• Goa, Calangute beach INDIA
• Goa, Candolim beach INDIA
• Goa, Aguada INDIA
• Goa, Divar INDIA
• Goa, Dona Paula INDIA
• Goa, Majorda beach INDIA
• Goa, Palolem beach INDIA
• Orissa, Barkul INDIA (Record: 07/12/1986)
• Orissa, Sambal Island INDIA (Record: 06/09/1987)
• Tamil Nadu, Pichavaram INDIA (Record: 00/08/1986 - 00/07/1987)
• Tamil Nadu, Chennai INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA (Record: 2003, 2008)
• Gujarat, Gulf of Kachchh INDIA
• Orissa, Chilika Lake INDIA
• Orissa, Bhitarkanika INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Point Calimere (Lat: 10.3) (Long: 79.85) INDIA

Literature Source(s)
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at -
  • Myers, P; Espinosa, R; Parr, CS; Jones, T; Hammond, GS and Dewey, TA (2006) Animal diversity web Available at -
  • (2003) IUCN Red list of threatened species Available at -
  • Kumar, A; Sati, JP; Tak, PC and Alfred, JRB (2005) Handbook on Indian wetland birds and their conservation Zoological Survey of India, Dehra Dun 468 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Lainer, H (2004) Birds of Goa : A reference book The Goa Foundation, Goa 244 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • PBase Available at -
  • Chattopadhyay, S (1995) Aves Wetland ecosystem series 1: Fauna of Chilika lake ZSI, Calcutta 561-599 Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Sampath, K and Krishnamurthy, K (1990) Shorebirds (Charadriiformes) of the Pichavaram Mangroves, Tamil Nadu, India Wader Study Group Bulletin 58 24-27 Available at -
  • Marine Biological Station, Chennai, Tamil Nadu (2003) Checklist of marine fauna of Tamil Nadu Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Available at -
  • Dr. Ramesh, R; Dr. Nammalwar, P and Dr. Gowri, VS (2008) Database on coastal information of Tamil Nadu Report Submitted to Environmental Information System (ENVIS) Centre, Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Institute for Ocean Management, Anna University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Available at -
  • (1997) Coastal marine environment of Gujarat 178pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Available at -
  • Vernacular names of the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent Buceros, Envis newsletter: Avian Ecology & Inland Wetlands 62pp Available at -
  • Manakadan R and Pittie A (2001) Standardized English names of the Birds of the Indian Subcontinent BUCEROS Envis Newsletter: Avian ecology and inland wetland 6(1) 26pp Available at -
  • Kumar A, sati JP and Tak CK (2003) Checklist of Indian Waterbids Buceros Envis Newsletter: Avian ecology and inland wetlands 8(1) 30pp Available at -
  • Balachandran, S (2006) The decline in wader populations along the east coast of India with special reference to Point Calimere, south-east India. Waterbirds around the world. Eds. G.C. Boere, C.A. Galbraith & D.A. Stroud The Stationery Office, Edinburgh, UK. 296-301pp Available at -
  • Nayak, A.K. (2006) Status of migratory shorebirds at Bhitarkanika and Chilika wetlands on the east coast of India Waterbirds around the world. Eds. G.C. Boere, C.A. Galbraith & D.A. Stroud The Stationery Office, Edinburgh, UK 305-307pp Available at -
  • Lal Mohan RS (1986) Birds and Bird Catchers Of Ramanathapuram Coast Available at -
  • Ali S and Ripley SD (1969) Handbook of the birds of India and Pakistan Oxford university press 2 1-337pp Available at - NIO

Page last updated on:2013-02-06

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