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From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Dot·ter·el, n.
 1. Zool. A European bird of the Plover family (Eudromias morinellus, syn. Charadrius morinellus).  It is tame and easily taken, and is popularly believed to imitate the movements of the fowler.
    In catching of dotterels we see how the foolish bird playeth the ape in gestures.   --Bacon.
 Note: ☞  The ringed dotterel (or ring plover) is {Charadrius hiaticula}.
 2. A silly fellow; a dupe; a gull.