Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Faking it

What's that ahead in the road? That bird looks like it might be broken...

Have you ever seen a killdeer do its distraction display? To a car speeding along a dirt road in the middle of Nowhere, North Dakota?

;-)

The abundant killdeer taught an early lesson in exploring the prairie: slow down... look around... tread gently...

You never know what treasures you may find if you look closely enough.

For you non-bird folks: Killdeer and some other birds perform distraction or broken-wing displays to lure predators away from their nest or chicks. The adult bird fans its tail and drags a droopy wing along the ground so that you or I or a fox will think it an easy meal to catch. Soon enough, once the young are out of danger or forgotten, the parent flies off thumbing its nose for having faked you out. A great trick!

8 comments:

Sekhar said...

Thanks for introducing me to the bird called Killdeer. I never knew this bird before :)

cedrorum said...

Great pictures. This is one of my favorite bird displays and you caught it all so well.

RuthieJ said...

OMG-that baby Killdeer is so cute! You're lucky -- I've seen the broken wing act, but never a baby!

Rondeau Ric said...

Were you at the Potholes and Praries Birnding Festival?
I did meet some poeple from New Jersey but I don't recall meeting you.
Great place isn't it.

dguzman said...

Look at that cute little baby! Killdeer nest all around my house but I still haven't gotten to see the big fake-out display OR a sweet little birdy like that.

Ruth said...

We have many Kildeer in our area and the broken-winged routine is commonly seen. I found a nest once with 4 eggs, but have never seen a chick.

mon@rch said...

Awww . . . baby Killfawns!

Mary said...

I remember the first time I approached a Killdeer. I wondered what type of affliction that bird had...strange behavior, for sure. Later I learned it made sense.