Family Plovers (Charadriidae)

Least Concern

Pied Lapwing (Hoploxypterus cayanus)


French: Vanneau de Cayenne German: Cayennekiebitz Spanish: Avefría de Cayena
Other common names: Pied Plover

Charadrius cayanus


, 1790,





South America E of Andes, from E Colombia, E Ecuador, Venezuela and the Guianas to mouth of R Amazon, then S to E Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, SE Brazil (S to Paraná) and extreme NE Argentina (Misiones); few records W of Andes in Ecuador#R.

Descriptive notes

21–24 cm; 54–84 g. Small lapwing compared to V. chilensis and V. resplendens (no overlap with latter), resembling Charadrius plovers in... read more


Gives a pleasant bisyllabic “kee-oo”, the latter part lower pitched, and which becomes... read more


Mudflats and sandbanks of savanna ponds and rivers in forested zone; also along sea coast. Recorded... read more

Food and feeding

Poorly known. Items recorded mainly insects, including Hemiptera, Heteroptera, Hymenoptera, and Coleoptera, as well as Myriopoda; also... read more


Display behaviour observed in May–Jul, nest with eggs in Jul in Colombia, nest with eggs in Mar in Venezuelan llanos and... read more


Generally considered to be sedentary, although numbers in suitable habitat fluctuate markedly in... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). No population estimates available; apparently very uncommon, although substantial numbers have been observed in savannas of Venezuela... read more

Recommended citation

Wiersma, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Pied Lapwing (Hoploxypterus cayanus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 24 February 2020).