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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

Ruddy Turnstone Arenaria interpres

Found on coasts all over the world, the ruddy turnstone feeds in a distinctive way, scuttling along the tideline, flicking stones aside with a deft movement of its bill. This often reveals sandhoppers and other small animals, which it snaps up or chases. Ruddy turnstones, like many waders, nest in the far north, but their feeding habits restrict them to coastal areas. After breeding, their southward migration takes them to coasts on every continent except Antarctica.

Ruddy Turnstonezoom image
Ruddy Turnstonezoom image
Ruddy Turnstonezoom image
  • Order Charadriiformes
  • Length 8–10 in (21–25 cm)
  • Weight 3–4 oz (80–110 g)
  • Habitat Rocky/sandy coasts, coastal lowlands
  • Distribution Arctic coasts (breeding); temperate and tropical coasts worldwide (non-breeding)