Determining the sex of Crab Plovers (Dromas ardeola) based on morphology has, hitherto, proven difficult. Here, six morphological traits (head-bill length, bill length, bill depth, wing chord, tarsus length and weight) of 39 molecularly or behaviorally sexed breeding Crab Plovers were compared in order to find a reliable morphometric way to determine their sex. Males were significantly larger than females in all traits, except tarsus length, and especially in traits related to head and bill size, where males were 6.8 to 11.4% larger than females. Discriminant Function Analysis correctly classified 97.4% of birds using only bill depth and bill length, providing an efficient tool for sexing Crab Plovers in the hand.
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Vol. 35 • No. 2