Animalia > Chordata > Aves > Charadriiformes > Scolopacidae > Arenaria > Arenaria melanocephala

Arenaria melanocephala (Black Turnstone)

Synonyms: Strepsilas melanocephalus
Language: Spanish

Wikipedia Abstract

The black turnstone (Arenaria melanocephala) is a species of small wading bird. It is one of two species of turnstone in the genus Arenaria, the ruddy turnstone (A. interpres) being the other. It is now classified in the sandpiper family, Scolopacidae, but was formerly sometimes placed in the plover family, Charadriidae. It is native to the west coast of North America and breeds only in Alaska.
View Wikipedia Record: Arenaria melanocephala

EDGE Analysis

Uniqueness Scale: Similiar (0) 
 Unique (100)
Uniqueness & Vulnerability Scale: Similiar & Secure (0) 
 Unique & Vulnerable (100)
ED Score: 17.7736
EDGE Score: 2.93245


Adult Weight [1]  122 grams
Birth Weight [3]  17.3 grams
Female Weight [5]  135 grams
Male Weight [5]  118 grams
Weight Dimorphism [5]  14.4 %
Breeding Habitat [2]  Arctic coastal, Arctic tundra
Wintering Geography [2]  Pacific Coast
Wintering Habitat [2]  Rocky intertidal
Diet [4]  Carnivore (Invertebrates)
Diet - Invertibrates [4]  100 %
Forages - Ground [4]  100 %
Clutch Size [7]  4
Clutches / Year [1]  1
Global Population (2017 est.) [2]  95,000
Incubation [6]  22 days
Mating Display [3]  Ground and non-acrobatic aerial display
Maximum Longevity [6]  9 years
Migration [8]  Intracontinental
Wing Span [6]  19 inches (.48 m)


Protected Areas


Important Bird Areas

Name Location  IBA Criteria   Website   Climate   Land Use 
Baynes Sound Canada A4i
Northern Montague Island USA A4i

Biodiversity Hotspots

Name Location Endemic Species Website
California Floristic Province Mexico, United States No

Prey / Diet

Diaulota densissima (Pacific Coast rove beetle)[9]
Littorina scutulata (checkered periwinkle)[9]
Lottia pelta (shield limpet)[9]
Pachygrapsus crassipes (striped shore crab)[9]
Pugettia producta (northern kelp crab)[9]


Range Map

External References

NatureServe Explorer


Attributes / relations provided by
1Nathan P. Myhrvold, Elita Baldridge, Benjamin Chan, Dhileep Sivam, Daniel L. Freeman, and S. K. Morgan Ernest. 2015. An amniote life-history database to perform comparative analyses with birds, mammals, and reptiles. Ecology 96:3109
2Partners in Flight Avian Conservation Assessment Database, version 2017. Accessed on January 2018.
3Terje Lislevand, Jordi Figuerola, and Tamás Székely. 2007. Avian body sizes in relation to fecundity, mating system, display behavior, and resource sharing. Ecology 88:1605
4Hamish Wilman, Jonathan Belmaker, Jennifer Simpson, Carolina de la Rosa, Marcelo M. Rivadeneira, and Walter Jetz. 2014. EltonTraits 1.0: Species-level foraging attributes of the world's birds and mammals. Ecology 95:2027
5Handel, CM, and RE Gill. 2001. Black Turnstone (Arenaria melanocephala). In The Birds of North America, no. 585 (A. Poole and F. Gill, Eds.). Birds of North America, Philadelphia
6del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
7Jetz W, Sekercioglu CH, Böhning-Gaese K (2008) The Worldwide Variation in Avian Clutch Size across Species and Space PLoS Biol 6(12): e303. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0060303
8Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at
9Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
10Gibson, D. I., Bray, R. A., & Harris, E. A. (Compilers) (2005). Host-Parasite Database of the Natural History Museum, London
Ecoregions provided by World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF). WildFinder: Online database of species distributions, ver. 01.06 Wildfinder Database
Biodiversity Hotspots provided by Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund
Abstract provided by DBpedia licensed under a Creative Commons License
Species taxanomy provided by GBIF Secretariat (2022). GBIF Backbone Taxonomy. Checklist dataset accessed via on 2023-06-13; License: CC BY 4.0