Eastern Golden Plover.
The Eastern golden plover, whose yellow-speckled plumage and whistling call make it so distinct from other game-birds of the marshes, is a very well known bird in the East, going about in flocks, and being found not only in India, Burma and Ceylon, but even being common in the Andamans, Nicobars, and Laccadives. It becomes, however, rare in Sind, and is not found in the hills nor in jungly districts ; it likes flat swampy districts near the coasts and large rivers. It is an animal feeder, devouring insects and worms, and is good eating, though said to be not equal to the European golden plover.
Golden plover come in in September, and, though Jerdon's statement that they breed in India is questioned nowadays, at any rate they may be found in mid-May. At this time they have black under-parts, making a striking and beautiful contrast with their yellow-marked backs, and outlined by a pure white border.
This plover breeds in the northern parts of the Old World from the Yenisei eastward, and also in North America; but the American race is larger than the Eastern. It visits the Malay Archipelago, Australia, South America, and even the Sandwich Islands, in winter, but is very rare to the west of our limits even at that time. It should be noticed that both this and the following species, like so many plovers, have no hinder toes.