A turnstone and shell on the beach

UK Winter Wildlife- The Turnstone

Following the migration of many of our British summer birds, the team at Surfability have been turning our eye to those remaining on our beach for winter.

As the violent winter storms continue to draw in, the sight of seaweed lined beaches is on the rise. While this may not be a cause for celebration for everyone, the arrival of the slimy sea stuff does promise an appearance from a lovely local bird- the Turnstone.

A turnstone and shell on the beach

Bright eyed and nimble, Turnstones have a powerful beak and neck perfect for turning stones, shells and seaweed alike. Identifiable by their brown, black and white feather and bright orange legs, Turnstones can be spotted along the shoreline as they unearth a buffet of insects, crustaceans and molluscs.

Distinguished by their darker coloured feathers in winter, these inquisitive and busy little birds display bright feathers and red legs in their mating season. As monogamous mates, these sociable birds take turns to sit on their olive colour eggs.

But if you’re thinking that Turnstones are all about cooperatioA turnstone guarding it's dinnern and love, you might be surprised to learn that Turnstones generally don’t like to share! In fact, Turnstones have been known to chase other birds for up to 160km to save their dinner and roost!

If you’d like to see a Turnstone for yourself, it’s time to schedule that trip to the beach. And why not book yourself a surf while you’re at it? The team at Surfability are here to make sure there’s a wave for everyone…