Sooty Oystercatchers specialise in feeding on intertidal invertebrates on rock shores like intertidal reefs and around headlands - although they can also be found on sandy beaches.
If you’ve ever visited a rock pool you’ll know how well attached some Muscles, Oysters and other creatures are. This is why Sooty Oystercatchers have evolved amazingly strong bills allowing them to prize off and crack open even the toughest “shellfish”.
Sooty Oystercatchers often breed on small rocky islands just off the coast, but can also nest on beaches.
There are two subspecies; the Southern Sooty Oystercatcher (Haematopus fuliginosus fuliginosus) and the Northern Sooty Oystercatcher (Haematopus fuliginosus ophthalmicus).
Finding nests or young chicks on these islands is almost impossible, however if you are near a nest or young you will probably know because parents will take to the air calling loudly around you and possibly even swooping you.