Birds of America
By John James Audubon, F. R. SS. L. & E.
GENUS I.--CHARADRIUS, Linn. PLOVER.
Bill short, or as long as the head, straight, rather stout, somewhat
compressed, pointed; upper mandible with the dorsal line straight, and slightly
declinate for at least half its length, then bulging a little, and arched to the
tip, which is rather acute, the sides flat and sloping at the base, convex
towards the end, where the edges are sharp and inclinate; nasal groove extended
to half the length, and bare; lower mandible with the angle rather long and
narrow, the sides at the base erect and nearly flat, the dorsal line ascending
and slightly convex, the edges sharp and involute towards the tip, which is
narrow and rather pointed. Nostrils sub-basal, linear, open, and pervious.
Eyes rather large. Head of moderate size, roundish, the forehead much rounded;
neck rather short; body ovate, rather full. Feet rather long, slender; tibia
bare for a considerable space; tarsus rather compressed, covered all round with
reticulated hexagonal scales; toes of moderate length, slender, scutellate,
second shorter than fourth, first wanting or rudimentary; anterior toes broadly
marginate, webbed at the base. Claws small, compressed, slightly arched, rather
acute. Plumage soft, blended, the feathers broad and rounded. Wings long and
pointed, the primaries tapering, the first longest; inner secondaries tapering
and elongated. Tail rather short, or of moderate length, rounded, of twelve
rounded feathers. Tongue tapering, grooved above; oesophagus of moderate width;
proventriculus oblong; stomach roundish, very muscular, its lateral and inferior
muscles prominent, epithelium dense, longitudinally rugous; intestine rather
long and of moderate width; coeca rather long.