Family XXXV. CHARADRIINAE. PLOVERS.
GENUS I. CHARADRIUS, Linn. PLOVER
Bill short, or as long as the head, straight, rather stout, somewhat compressed, pointed; upper mandible with the dorsal line straight, and slightly declinate for at least half its length, then bulging a little, and arched to the tip, which is rather acute, the sides flat and sloping at the base, convex towards the end, where the edges are sharp and inclinate; nasal groove extended to half the length, and bare; lower mandible with the angle rather long and narrow, the sides at the base erect and nearly flat, the dorsal line ascending and slightly convex, the edges sharp and involute towards the tip, which is narrow and rather pointed. Nostrils sub-basal, linear, open, and pervious. Eyes rather large. Head of moderate size, roundish, the forehead much rounded; neck rather short; body ovate, rather full. Feet rather long, slender; tibia bare for a considerable space; tarsus rather compressed, covered all round with reticulated hexagonal scales; toes of moderate length, slender, scutellate, second shorter than fourth, first wanting or rudimentary; anterior toes broadly marginate, webbed at the base. Claws small, compressed, slightly arched, rather acute. Plumage soft, blended, the feathers broad and rounded. Wings long and pointed, the primaries tapering, the first longest; inner secondaries tapering and elongated. Tail rather short, or of moderate length, rounded, of twelve rounded feathers. Tongue tapering, grooved above; oesophagus of moderate width; proventriculus oblong; stomach roundish, very muscular, its lateral and inferior muscles prominent, epithelium dense, longitudinally rugous; intestine rather long and of moderate width; coeca rather long.