American Oystercatcher

  • Galapagos Wildlife: American Oystercatcher © Luis Piovani

    American Oystercatcher © Luis Piovani

  • Galapagos Wildlife: American Oystercatcher © Iris Waanders

    American Oystercatcher © Iris Waanders

  • Galapagos Wildlife: American Oystercatcher © David Maw

    American Oystercatcher © David Maw

Species Data

Common Name American oystercatcher
Scientific Name Haematopus palliatus
Spanish Name Ostrero común americano
Conservation Status

species1_leastconcernLeast concern



Size up to 40cm tall
Average Lifespan 10 years
Predators Vulnerable to predation by feral cats and dogs
Food Oysters, mussels, clams and limpets, as well as snails and crabs
Animal Class Aves

Species Overview

The American oystercatcher is a shorebird that is found all around South America’s coastline. The American oystercatcher occupies a variety of coastal habitats, including rocky and sandy beaches, mudflats, salt ponds, salt marsh islands, estuaries and river mouths. It typically feeds on intertidal mudflats and sandbars, especially where oysters are abundant, and nests in areas with little vegetation. In Galapagos, it is found on sandy beaches and on lava rock.

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