|Pluvialis dominica||Order: Charadriiformes||Family: Charadriidae (Plovers and Lapwings)|
American Golden-Plovers breed on the tundra and winter in southern South America, so all of my sightings of them have been during migration until I was in Alaska in 2022. Here in Duluth, they’re seen most often during migration on what used to be the ball field on Park Point and at the Duluth International Airport.
On September 18, 1992, an F-16 smashed into a flock of American Golden-Plovers on takeoff; some went through the single engine, killing it. The pilot managed to point the plane away from settled neighborhoods and safely ejected. I was the one who identified the charred carcasses, but then my ID had to be confirmed by Roxie Laybourne at the Smithsonian. This was the first known crash of aircraft with American Golden-Plovers anywhere in the inland United States or Canada.