Scientific name: Vanellus vanellus
The distinctive rounded wings of the Lapwing are displayed beautifully when it wheels around a winter sky in a massive flock. In spring, these flocks disperse and some birds breed in the UK. Listen out for their 'peewit' calls on grasslands and wetlands.
Average lifespan: 4 years
Classified in the UK as Red under the Birds of Conservation Concern 4: the Red List for Birds (2015). Priority Species under the UK Post-2010 Biodiversity Framework. Listed as Near Threatened on the global IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
When to seeJanuary to December
AboutFamiliar birds of farmlands and wetlands, Lapwings can often be seen wheeling through winter skies in large, black and white flocks. As spring approaches, these flocks get smaller; some birds head back to their continental breeding grounds and others disperse to breed in the UK. Males put on dramatic aerial displays, tumbling through the air, accompanied by their piercing 'peewit' call, which gives them their other, common name: Peewit. Females can be spotted on their nests, which are simple scrapes in the mud or sand. By late spring, cute, fluffy lapwing chicks can be seen venturing out to forage. If the nest is threatened at all, the parents will attacked or 'mob' the potential predators.
How to identifyLapwings can be recognised by their long crests, black and white patterns, and very broad, round wingtips. From a distance, Lapwings look black and white, but up-close, the back has an iridescent green and purple sheen.
In our area
Suffolk Wildlife Trust are working with farmers and landowners helps to create wet features in fields and lower stock densities to create ideal grass swards for nesting.