“Oystercatcher” My Favorite Seabird in Little Whale Cove, Or

by | May 13, 2021



“Ollie and Olivia,” my Oystercatcher friends, live happily on the basalt cliffs of Cove. On rare days they can be seen. Both appear together watching their nest while the other searches for little morsals while the tide is low.” This is their story…


Nearly all species of oystercatcher are monogamous. There are reports of polygamy in the Eurasian oystercatcher, they say.

They are territorial during the breeding season, some year around defend their secret spot. Strong mate and nesting site protection is a life long mission in love…

There is one record of a pair defending the same site for 20 years. A single nesting attempt is timed over the summer months with joy…

The nests are simple cozy structures protected in a nook high up on the basalt cliffs. Nests are placed in a spot with good visibility.

The eggs of oystercatchers are spotted and cryptic. They are hard too see by hawks and other predators by the sea..

Between one and four eggs are laid, with three being norm in the Cove. Mom’s tend to take more incubation. Dad’s are in more of territorial fighting style…

Incubation varies by species, lasting between 24–39 days. They are also known to practice “egg dumping.” Like the cuckoo, they sometimes lay their eggs in the nests of other species such as seagulls, abandoning them to be raised by those birds.

I find this last part the most amazing thing to think about. If the Oystercatcher pair is unable to care for the little ones, they find loving foster parents to care for them in a new home close by.

Seagulls are that way, it would seem. My pal, “Old George ” The Western Gull, told me so…

“The Furry Loved Ones and Wildlife Friends Who Touch Our Hearts” click below…

Steve and Judy Sparks
Children and Families in Life After Trauma

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
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