First plover chicks hatching at Cape Henlopen

June 14, 2014

This season’s first piping plover chicks have begun hatching on the Point at Cape Henlopen, Delaware beachnesting bird monitors reported, noting the nest contained one chick and three eggs when observed. “We anticipate seeing chicks hatching in another nest on the Point by Friday,” said Wildlife Biologist Matthew Bailey, who coordinates the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s Piping Plover Protection Program, noting that a third nest is expected to hatch next week. “A fourth pair of plovers have just begun laying eggs on the Point. We expect that nest to reach a full clutch by this Saturday,” Bailey said.

Meanwhile, at Gordons Pond, two pairs of plovers are incubating their nests, with hatching anticipated during the second and third weeks of June.

In other beachnesting bird news, American oystercatcher pairs continue to be observed at the Point, but no nests have been seen yet. Least terns also are colonizing Gordons Pond, with as many as a dozen terns in the area making scrapes. One least tern nest has been found at the site so far.

For more information about beachnesting birds or monitoring efforts, contact Wildlife Biologist Matt Bailey at 302-382-4151 or email