What Do Baby Killdeer Eat?

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August 4, 2022 by Marjorie R. Rogers, MA (English), Certified Consultant

Baby killdeer are born with a full set of feathers and are able to fly within hours of hatching. Their diet consists mostly of insects, such as beetles, ants and grasshoppers. Baby killdeer will also eat small reptiles, like lizards and snakes.

Most baby killdeer are born with a full crop of down feathers, and they are able to fly within hours of hatching. The diet of a young killdeer consists mainly of insects such as beetles, ants and grasshoppers. Baby killdeer will also eat small amounts of vegetation, but this is usually only if there is a shortage of insects available.

As they grow older, the amount of vegetation in their diet increases until they are adults, which eat almost exclusively plants.

How to feed and take care of baby killdeer?

Baby Killdeer Running

If you’re lucky enough to spot a killdeer on the beach or in a park, you might see something special – a baby killdeer running around after its parents. These little birds are born without any feathers and are unable to fly. For the first few weeks of their lives, they rely on their parents for protection from predators.

As they grow older, their feathers start to come in and they become more independent. By the time they’re ready to fledge, or leave the nest, they can fly and fend for themselves. While it’s fun to watch these precocious youngsters scurry about, it’s important to give them space and not disturb their nests.

Killdeer are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and it is illegal to harm or disturb them in any way. So next time you’re out enjoying nature, keep your eyes peeled for these little balls of fluff – you might just be lucky enough to witness one taking its first steps into the wide world.

What Do Baby Killdeer Eat?

Credit: birdfact.com

Do Killdeer Feed Their Babies?

Yes, killdeer do feed their babies. The diet of a killdeer chick is mostly insects, which are fed to them by their parents. On occasion, chicks will also eat plants and small rocks.

Do Killdeer Abandon Their Babies?

No, killdeer do not abandon their babies. If a killdeer nest is disturbed, the parents will try to distract predators by feigning injury and leading them away from the nest. The parents will take turns incubating the eggs and guarding the chicks.

Once the chicks are old enough to fly, they will leave the nest and fend for themselves.

Can You Keep a Killdeer As a Pet?

No, you cannot keep a Killdeer as a pet. The Killdeer is a protected species under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and it is illegal to possess one without a permit. Even if you were able to obtain a permit, Killdeers are not domesticated animals and would not do well in captivity.

They are wild birds that require open spaces to live and thrive.

Can You Touch a Baby Killdeer?

Yes, you can touch a baby Killdeer. They are not harmful to humans and are actually quite friendly. The best time to touch them is when they are newly hatched as they are more likely to be tame.

Once they get older, they become more wild and may not want to be touched by humans.


According to this blog post, baby killdeer typically eat small insects and spiders. The author notes that they will also occasionally eat small berries or seeds.

About Author (Marjorie R. Rogers)

The inspiring mum of 6 who dedicates her time to supporting others. While battling with her own demons she continues to be the voice for others unable to speak out. Mental illness almost destroyed her, yet here she is fighting back and teaching you all the things she has learned along the way. Get Started To Read …

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