Birding Aus <>
Dotterel v Antlions
Tue, 16 Apr 2013 19:39:21 +1000
On April 2 I was watching Black-fronted Dotterels on the shore of Lake Pinaroo
near Fort Grey Camp, Sturt National Park, NSW.
Most individuals were feeding along the water's edge but one was way up on the
back of the beach near the beginning of the woodland. This area was sandy and
covered in Antlion larvae cones.
The lone Dotterel systematically searched the sand for cones and dipped into
each one and clearly at times gobbled up a morsel from within. I flipped the
camera to video mode and shot some of the action. Then I photographed a cone
with Dotterel footprints leading up to and away from the cone.
I'd not heard of this before and research since has not turned up Antlion
larvae predation by birds. Nor are Antlion larvae listed in HANZAB as a prey
of the Black-fronted Dotterel.
The movie clip is nearly 2 mins long and 52 mb. It is at:
The photo of the footprints is at:
I'd be interested if anyone else has seen such behaviour.
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