The Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres) is a small wading bird, one of two species of turnstone in the genus Arenaria. It is now classified in the sandpiper family Scolopacidae but was formerly sometimes placed in the plover family Charadriidae. It is a highly migratory bird, breeding in northern parts of Eurasia and North America and flying south to winter on coastlines almost worldwide. It is the only species of turnstone in much of its range and is often known simply as Turnstone.
It can survive in a wide range of habitats and climatic conditions from Arctic to tropical. The typical breeding habitat is open tundra with water nearby. Outside the breeding reason, it is found along coasts, particularly on rocky or stony shores. It is often found on man-made structures such as breakwaters and jetties. It may venture onto open grassy areas near the coast. Small numbers sometimes turn up on inland wetlands, especially during the spring and autumn migrations. Birds are often faithful to particular sites, returning there year after year.
Ruddy Turnstones are fairly long-lived birds with a low annual mortality rate. They are able to breed when two years old. Their average lifespan is 9 years with 19 years and 2 months being the longest recorded.
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