- 8.7–9.8 in
- 3.5–6 oz
- Tournepierre noir (French)
- Vuelvepiedras negro (Spanish)
- As their name suggests, turnstones often forage by turning over stones and other objects.
- On the breeding grounds, the Black Turnstone is extremely aggressive to avian predators, flying more than 100 m from its territory to pursue jaegers and gulls.
- The oldest recorded Black Turnstone was a female and was at least 8 years old when she was recaptured and rereleased during banding operations in Alaska.
- Breeds in sparsely vegetated areas next to coastal meadows.
- In winter, found along high-energy rocky shorelines, on beaches near rocky coasts, and on jetties and piers.
Aquatic invertebrates: crustaceans, barnacles, and limpets.
- Egg Description
- Oval to mildly pointed, pale olive with brown spots and blotches.
- Condition at Hatching
- Active and covered with down.
Scrape or depression in ground or vegetation. Lined with vegetation.
Uses aerial displays to attract a mate.Uses oddly-shaped bill to flip and turn stones, algae, sticks, and other items to find food underneath. Probes in cracks. Pecks at food on surface of rocks.
This species is on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List, which lists bird species that are at risk of becoming threatened or endangered without conservation action.
- Handel, C. M., and R. E. Gill. 2001. Black Turnstone (Arenaria melanocephala). In The Birds of North America, No. 585 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
- North American Bird Conservation Initiative, U.S. Committee. 2014. State of the Birds 2014 Report. U.S. Department of Interior, Washington, DC.
- USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. 2015. Longevity records of North American Birds.