Black OystercatcherHaematopus bachmani
17-17 1/2" (43-44 cm). A large stocky shorebird, black with a long, stout, red bill. American Oystercatcher (Haematopus palliatus), boldly patterned in black and white, breeds in Baja California and is a casual visitor to California.
A whistled wheeee-whee-whee-whee.
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Resident from Aleutian Islands southward along Pacific Coast to Baja California.
The Black Oystercatcher is only rarely found on sandy beaches--the normal habitat of the American Oystercatcher--but favors rocky coasts. It can be hard to see against a background of wet, seaweed-encrusted rocks and usually forages alone or in small groups. It feeds on a variety of marine life, specializing in creatures that cling to rocks below the high-tide line.
2 or 3 olive-buff eggs, with brownish-black blotches, among pebbles in a shallow rocky depression or in a hollow on a beach.