The lesser sand plover (Charadrius mongolus) is a small wader in the plover family of birds. The spelling is commonly given as lesser sandplover, but the official British Ornithologists' Union spelling is "lesser sand plover". The genus name Charadrius is a Late Latin word for a yellowish bird mentioned in the fourth-century Vulgate. It derives from Ancient Greek kharadrios a bird found in ravines and river valleys (kharadra, "ravine"). The specific mongolus is Latin and refers to Mongolia which at the time of naming referred to a larger area than the present country.

There are five races, and the large east Asian forms, C. m. mongolus and C. m. stegmanni, are sometimes given specific status as Mongolian plovers, Charadrius mongolus. If the taxonomic split is accepted, lesser sand plover as then defined becomes Charadrius atrifrons, including the three races atrifrons, pamirensis and schaeferi.

It breeds above the tree line in the Himalayas and discontinuously across to bare coastal plains in north-eastern Siberia, with the Mongolian plover in the eastern part of the range; it has also bred in Alaska. It nests in a bare ground scrape, laying three eggs. This species is strongly migratory, wintering on sandy beaches in east Africa, south Asia and Australasia. It is a very rare vagrant in western Europe, but of the three individuals recorded in Great Britain up to 2003, one was a Mongolian plover.

This chunky plover is long-legged and long-billed. Breeding males have grey backs and white underparts. The breast, forehead and nape are chestnut, and there is a black eye mask. The female is duller, and winter and juvenile birds lack the chestnut, apart from a hint of rufous on the head. Legs are dark and the bill black.

In all plumages, this species is very similar to the greater sand plover, Charadrius leschenaultii. Separating the species may be straightforward in mixed wintering flocks on an Indian beach, where the difference in size and structure is obvious; it is more difficult to identify a lone vagrant to western Europe, where both species are very rare. The problem is compounded in that the Middle Eastern race of greater sand plover is the most similar to the lesser. The lesser usually has darker legs, a white forehead, and a more even white wing bar than the greater.

The lesser sand plover's feeds on insects, crustaceans and annelid worms, which are obtained by a run-and-pause technique, rather than the steady probing of some other wader groups. This species takes fewer steps and shorter pauses than the greater sand plover when feeding.

The flight call is a hard trill.

The lesser sand plover is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.
Lesser Sand-Plover
Date Location Count
2020-11-22 07:19Mida Creek
2020-11-26 06:49Sabaki River Estuary
2020-11-20 05:45Arikhiya Farm1
2020-11-09 08:00Bu Tinah Island12
2020-11-27 11:30Shuiyhat Island15
2020-10-30 07:00Mirfa Hotel30
2020-11-27 13:00Mirfa--eastern shoreline200
2020-10-29 08:55Jubail Mangrove Park1
2020-11-20 09:10Fahid Island35
2020-11-20 10:45Yas Island--northern mangrove tip55
2020-10-30 08:12Ajban Farms2
2020-10-29 12:59Al-Zora Protected Area50
2020-10-29 09:35Khor al-Beida3
2020-11-13 17:00Barracuda Beach Resort12
2020-11-07 06:40Al Rafa'a7
2020-11-26 16:13Khor Fakkan canal1
2020-11-03 17:00Khor Kalba (Alqurm Protected Area)6
2020-11-09 16:06Al Qurm Beach4
2020-11-22 07:30Dhinchada Lake
2020-11-21 16:00Dhichda
2020-11-14 08:30Saltpans on INS Valsura Rd5
2020-11-06 07:00Vibhapar
2020-11-23 07:28Sachana Beach50
2020-11-27 07:30Balachadi Beach100
2020-11-02 16:00Prashnavada Wetland15
2020-11-07 10:37Garida Dam1
2020-11-02 16:15Nava Bandar (New Port) Rd35
2020-11-05 06:45Haathab Beach50
2020-11-18 15:51Juni Akhol8
2020-10-31 13:37Narda Wetland1
2020-11-08 07:00Pariej Lake1
2020-11-22 08:30Kelwa Beach6
2020-11-27 09:18Virar--Tuss Khadi Beach, Arnala100
2020-11-22 07:31Jyoti Wetlands, Vasai5
2020-11-26 07:00Bhuigaon Beach Vasai10
2020-11-01 10:10Merces, Near Suruchi beach50
2020-11-02 07:30Gorai jetty1
2020-11-19 09:07Mogara Nallah1
2020-11-22 12:30Akshi Beach, Alibaug, Raigad200
2020-10-31 06:52Bhandup Pumping Station, Mumbai3
2020-11-20 13:16Panje, Uran2
2020-11-18 12:01TS Chanakya College, Navi Mumbai40
2020-11-16 10:48Kelshi Village, Ratnagiri
2020-11-20 10:30Kavaratti Island2
2020-11-21 08:00Morjim Beach5
2020-11-26 14:47Chapora Estuary50
2020-11-03 16:57Karwar Beach--North End8
2020-11-25 06:56Kapurwadi lake1
2020-11-15 17:00Pavinkurva South (Hanging Bridge), Karki8
2020-11-01 14:38Gangoli35
2020-11-21 16:30Kodi Delta Point & Sea Walk1
2020-11-26 17:00Mattu - beach and Padukere2
2020-11-15 09:00Sasihithlu Vehicle Parking Lot3
2020-11-21 07:00Sasihitlu -- Beach and Estuary
2020-11-25 15:49Kumbla-Shiriya Estuary3
2020-11-22 17:35Chithari Estuary10
2020-11-21 06:37Mappila Bay25
2020-10-29 08:40Kottappuzha Estuary16
2020-11-18 16:32Korapuzha Estuary14
2020-11-22 08:15Kadalundy Estuary (Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary)15
2020-11-27 07:05Ponnani Beach5
2020-11-22 15:30Chavakkad Puthan Kadappuram14
2020-11-08 08:00Puthuvype--Beach100
2020-11-25 16:02Kadamakudy--Valiya Kadamakkudy35
2020-11-15 17:00Kadamakudy--Thundathumkadavu
2020-11-15 07:10Kuttanad Wetlands--Melpadam11
2020-10-31 16:07Pozhikkara4
2020-11-07 09:20Valinokkam, Ramnad Dist55
2020-11-24 09:20Karankadu Mangroves10
2020-11-14 15:22Maravakkadu Salt pan21
2020-11-10 10:34Chinna Veerampattinam Beach138
2020-10-31 07:00Pallikaranai Marsh (பள்ளிக்கரணை சதுப்பு நிலம்)4
2020-11-05 05:41Pulicat Lake1
2020-11-28 07:15Adayaru Estuary12
2020-11-13 06:45Point Calimere Wildlife Sanctuary--Saltpans17
2020-11-14 09:30Point Calimere Wildlife Sanctuary30
2020-11-14 07:00Point Calimere Wildlife Sanctuary--Mudflats10
2020-10-30 10:17Vankalai Bird Sanctuary96
2020-11-03 07:35Puttalam Saltworks20
2020-11-03 06:28Matara--Kirala Kele Sanctuary2
2020-11-19 08:00Kalametiya Bird Sanctuary
2020-11-18 09:33Kalametiya50
2020-11-27 06:00Bundala NP (General)380
2020-11-01 05:30Mangalajodi Wetlands5
2020-11-18 10:30Purbasthali Bird Sanctuary PUB2
2020-11-15 12:45Frazergunj10
2020-11-21 11:00Bakkhali100
2020-11-21 09:45Kalisthan beach30
2020-11-26 05:30Sunderbans Tiger Reserve--Chamta Camp3
2020-11-02 06:30Sundarbans--Kotka12
2020-11-06 10:45Sonadia Island (Cox's Bazar)1
2020-11-06 06:00Sippighat16
2020-11-08 10:30Garacharma4
2020-11-01 16:02Garacharma40
2020-11-26 16:23Garacharma Wetlands11
2020-11-18 05:45Corbyn Cove Beach2
2020-11-20 16:25Rangat Bay, Middle Andamans1
2020-11-23 07:15Yeretta, Middle Andaman1
2020-11-16 16:42Phanang Tak Bay
2020-11-22 13:33Lanta Islands--Khlong Mak Pier87
2020-11-28 07:05Pak Thale Nature Reserve (general area)1000
2020-11-21 14:43Laem Phak Bia--salt pans east of Hwy. 4028
2020-11-21 15:40Laem Phak Bia (general area)
2020-10-31 12:01Laem Phak Bia--canal2
2020-11-13 12:27Phanthai Norasing Non-hunting Area--Mahachai Mangrove Forest Learning & Development Center II vicinity25
2020-11-19 17:00Khok Kham--Khlong Long Road
2020-11-24 16:05Khok Kham--Bird Center vicinity100
2020-11-22 15:32Bang Pu--Recreation Center20
2020-11-25 08:01Khlong Tamru salt pans300
2020-11-15 09:35Pantai Aceh mangroves and trail25
2020-11-28 09:00Sungai Burung, Pulau Pinang35
2020-11-24 07:00Gurney Drive and Straits Quay mudflats1
2020-11-08 15:30Kuala Muda150
2020-11-01 15:50Teluk Air Tawar - Kuala Muda IBA500
2020-11-08 17:02Prasae Rivermouth (Pak Nam Prasae)200
2020-11-17 07:30Kapar Power Station100
2020-11-28 08:40Neo Tiew Harvest Lane200
2020-11-21 10:30Marina East (Gardens by the Bay: Bay East / Marina Barrage)1
2020-11-16 15:03Pulau Ubin: Chek Jawa Wetlands120
2020-11-26 15:51Leizhou--Fucheng mudflat30
2020-11-27 07:12Leizhou--Houpo30
2020-11-03 06:00Sejingkat Power Station Ash Ponds2
2020-11-02 10:00深圳红树林海滨生态公园 (Haibin Seashore Mangrove Ecological Park)12
2020-11-19 15:49Delta Progo4
2020-11-26 06:36Kuala Baram Wetland4
2020-11-12 08:13金門--慈湖慈堤(Kinmen--Ci Causeway)5
2020-11-26 10:09金門--金沙官澳(Kinmen--Jinsha Guan'ao)4
2020-11-02 06:32Bali Barat NP
2020-11-23 14:30台南七股IBA--七股海堤(Qigu IBA--Qigu Seawall)5
2020-11-01 06:54台南--將軍馬沙溝43-11
2020-11-27 15:26台南青鯤鯓IBA--將軍(Qingkunshen IBA--Jiangjun)1
2020-11-01 09:36台南四草IBA--安清路魚塭(Sicao IBA--Fish Farms along Anqing Road)20
2020-11-24 13:41嘉義朴子溪口IBA--東石網寮(Puzi River Estuary IBA--Dongshi Wangliao)2
2020-11-26 07:25嘉義布袋濕地IBA--全區(Budai Wetland IBA)
2020-11-21 11:43嘉義布袋濕地IBA--布袋新塭之間灘地(Budai Wetland IBA--Wetlands between Budai & Xinwen)2
2020-11-16 08:51彰化--王功海堤(Changhua--Wanggong Seawall)1
2020-11-15 16:02彰化漢寶濕地IBA--漢寶退潮外灘地(Hanbao Wetland IBA--Mudflat on Low Tide)1
2020-11-16 10:22彰化漢寶濕地IBA--漢寶三條堤(Hanbao Wetland IBA--Hanbao Santiaoti)
2020-11-16 08:15彰化漢寶濕地IBA--全區(Hanbao Wetland IBA)11
2020-10-31 06:29东台--华南集团太阳能地面电站 (Dongtai--South Chinese Corp. Solar Farm)10
2020-11-26 11:42台中--高美濕地IBA (Taichung--Gaomei Wetland IBA)1
2020-11-01 14:33屏東--東港船頭(Pingtung--Donggang Chuantou)1
2020-11-15 10:40新竹濱海IBA--客雅溪口潮間帶(Hsinchu Coast IBA--Keya River Mouth Mudflat)30
2020-11-28 08:56新竹濱海IBA--香山濕地(Hsinchu Coast IBA--Xiangshan Wetland)100
2020-11-14 08:00新竹濱海IBA--港南金城湖(Hsinchu Coast IBA--Gangnan Jincheng Lake)2
2020-11-13 07:20新竹濱海IBA--港南全區(Hsinchu Coast IBA--Gangnan)5
2020-11-26 14:30桃園大坪頂與許厝港IBA--許厝港(含老街溪口、新街溪口)(Dapingding and Xucuogang IBA--Xucuogang)1
2020-11-10 08:27桃園大坪頂與許厝港IBA--許厝港復育區(Dapingding and Xucuogang IBA--Xucuogang Conservation Area)1
2020-11-13 11:35宜蘭蘭陽溪口IBA--國道以東河床(Lanyang River Estuary IBA--Eastern Riverbed)1
2020-11-18 06:20Tanza, Navotas50
2020-11-22 06:20Las Pinas-Paranaque Critical Habitat and Ecotourism Area2
2020-11-03 09:00Tanjay Boardwalk, brgy. San Isidro, Tanjay City1
2020-11-01 07:30San Moritz Wetlands, Sibulan4
2020-11-01 08:15Six Mile Creek (Port Hedland)5
2020-11-09 05:13West Island1
2020-11-07 14:20Horseshoe Cay (Ashmore Reef)2
2020-11-11 05:01West Island, Lacepede Islands
2020-10-31 10:25Entrance Point and Port (Broome)1
2020-11-14 11:05Wader Beach (Roebuck Bay)
2020-10-31 08:53Wader Spit (Roebuck Bay)
2020-11-02 08:28Broome Bird Observatory--Viewing Platform
2020-11-14 05:05Northern Shores (Roebuck Bay)4
2020-11-02 16:45East Point--far end15
2020-11-02 17:23East Point Reserve at -12.40569, 130.8196415
2020-11-09 08:30Rockshelf (west end of Aralia St, Nightcliff)
2020-11-20 06:45Buffalo Creek Shore
2020-11-24 10:00Jeff's Pirate Cove1
2020-11-14 13:41Tazi Pier1
2020-11-15 08:22Karumba Point5
2020-11-14 06:58Karumba Ferryman Cruise1
2020-11-26 10:27Iron Range National Park--Chili Beach1
2020-11-18 15:11Cairns Esplanade--Northern End1
2020-11-22 07:00Cairns Esplanade4
2020-11-27 15:42Cairns Esplanade--Southern End1
2020-11-27 10:00Lucinda1
2020-11-24 06:30Bushland Beach45
2020-11-17 07:15Cungulla Beach75
2020-11-11 07:03Byfield National Park--Sandy Point200
2020-11-26 12:58Lady Elliot Island1
2020-11-21 15:32Point Vernon Foreshore Reserve
2020-10-30 16:15Pialba Foreshore Hervey Bay14
2020-11-20 10:35Boonooroo Wader Roost6
2020-11-16 07:05Inskip Point1
2020-11-17 06:52Toorbul High Tide Roost3
2020-11-26 09:31Kakadu Beach (Bribie Island)6
2020-11-07 07:40Jamieson and Tingira Parks, Scarborough2
2020-11-17 16:33Frank Doyle Park (Shorncliffe)15
2020-11-15 15:00Nudgee Beach3
2020-11-14 16:07Wynnum Esplanade at Penfold Parade1
2020-11-07 12:45Manly Wader Roost (restricted access)7
2020-11-13 16:10Wellington Point35
2020-11-15 06:40Wellington Point--Geoff Skinner Reserve250
2020-11-21 10:00Farquhar Inlet, Old Bar1
2020-11-16 07:40Miranda--Ray's Rest/Taramaire Creek mouth1