I have a pair of Killdeer nesting in my back yard about 20 steps from my back door. Killdeer are a type of plover, and they like open ground. In years past I would hear them down in the marsh below my house, but something brought a pair up the hill to the yard this spring. Maybe too many llamas down there.
Although they have quite distinct markings, they can camouflage themselves very well.
Mom is checking me out.
She calls for her mate to join her. I am about 4 feet away from her clutch.
They begin a big show to distract me away from the nest. I stand very still, I don't want to alarm them too much, and I only visit for about a minute.
Come after me, my wings are broken!!
I'm really helpless over here. Come this way.
Look how wounded I am, I'd be an easy catch!
Mom and Dad both put on a charade for me. Somehow this must work for them.
Since it's in the middle of my back yard, I've had to stop mowing that particular area until the family is gone. For more on the killdeer see this excellent site: