Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2004-41

Common name:

Ruddy Turnstone

Scientific name: Arenaria interpres
Date: 8/29/04
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Length of time observed: 20 to 30 minutes
Number: 1
Age: Juvenile
Location: Antelope Island Causeway
County: Davis
Distance to bird: 40 to 50 feet
Optical equipment: 8x42 and 10x42 binoculars, Bausch and Lomb Discoverer Zoom Scope
Light Conditions: Good
Detailed description of bird: Stocky shorebird with short orange legs.
Tan face with a short black pointed bill.
Sides of neck were tan with the tan color extending down toward the upper breast on both sides. These tan markings on the sides of the upper
breast were both bordered by wide black horseshoe-shaped lines.
Chin, throat, and central upper breast were white. The rest of the underparts of the bird were also white.
Back and upper wings were scaled with brown and black feathers.
Primary wing feathers were mainly brown and appeared darker than the brown in the wings and back.  (see photos)
Song or call & method of delivery:  
Behavior: The bird was poking at the mud and turning over clots of mud apparently searching for food. The bird also spent a few minutes preening and fluffing up its feathers and wings.
Habitat: Shoreline of the Great Salt Lake.
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Overall shape and short orange legs eliminated most other shorebird species. Also, no other shorebird has the described distinctive neck and upper breast markings.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
Seen numerous times in Utah, Texas, Florida, and California.
References consulted: Sibley
Description from: Notes made later
Observer: Joel and Kathy Beyer
Observer's address: 1719 Hillcrest Avenue, Salt Lake City, UT 84106
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: Pomera Fronce, Milt Moody, Kent Lewis, Dennis Shirley
Date prepared: 11/20/04    (General Public)
Additional material:  
Additional comments: Photos of this bird (taken by other observers) are available on the Utah Birds website.