Last spring, Audubon North Carolina biologists observed a female Piping Plover that had been banded in The Bahamas on Hutaff Island, at Rich Inlet. She was stopping over in North Carolina to refuel before continuing north to breed at Breezy Point, NY, where she fledged three chicks before departing southward.
The female Piping Plover nicknamed Bandit by nest monitors in New York feeding at Topsail Inlet in early March 2012.
On March 11, we were happy to see her again, this time feeding at Topsail Inlet with 22 other Piping Plovers. Topsail Inlet is at the north end of Lea-Hutaff Island. It's about 650 miles, if she flies in a straight line, from Topsail Inlet to Andros Island, where she winters in The Bahamas. If, as is likely, she returns to the same area to nest in New York, she has about 500 miles yet to go.
-- Lindsay Addison