The family Charadriidae includes groups of birds known commonly as dotterels, lapwings and plovers.
The name plovers, lapwings and dotterels were names that were not applied with any great consistency. With some species being redefined, the general rule currently appears to be that the larger species are often called lapwings, whilst the smaller species are called plovers or dotterels. Two taxonomic sub-groups have emerged with lapwings belonging to the subfamily Vanellinae, and most plovers and dotterels belonging to the subfamily Charadriinae.
Further rationalisation of the common names have seen the large and common Australian bird known traditionally as the ‘spur-winged plover’, is now the ‘masked lapwing’; whilst the former ‘sociable plover’ is now the ‘sociable lapwing’.
- Scientific classification
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Aves
- Order: Charadriiformes
- Family: Charadriidae
- Subfamily: Charadriinae
Footnote & References
- Charadriidae, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charadriidae (last visited Oct. 1, 2021).
- Do you know the difference? Plvoers and Dotterels, Family Charadriidae, by Ellinor Campbell, drawings by Kaye Traynor, Angair Inc, https://www.angair.org.au/images/stories/angair/factsheets/plovers.pdf