Shorebirds

I had planned to visit the bird sanctuary today, as it looked like it was going to be the nicest day for weather for the next week. But when I got up this morning we were having very heavy showers. At first I thought I would cancel my plans, but later in the morning I changed my mind.  I got my camera gear ready and off I went. I was really glad I did. As soon as I arrived at the bird sanctuary, the clouds broke up a bit overhead and the sun came out. It was lovely with a very pleasant warm breeze. I had much better luck with the birds, too! Of course there were the ubiquitous mallards, and the Canada geese, but there were also a few pintails, green winged teal, northern shovellers, gadwalls,, and widgeon. Not as many as I’d hoped for, but better than the last couple of times I’ve visited. And of course, most of them were in their winter plain brown wrappers, so the females in particular all looked similar until examined more closely.

Much to my delight a group of dowitchers were in town, joined by greater and lesser yellowlegs and a lone godwit. Word was out that the godwit was in the area, and by the time he arrived, so had a small group of serious birders. Apparently godwits aren’t common visitors to this part of the country, though the odd one does make an appearance some years, so he was the cause of much excitement with the birders.

Later in the afternoon, while the birders were ogling the godwit, a pair of sandhills flew in.  The images, in order, are the Sandhill cranes, a Greater Yellowlegs, a group of Greater Yellowlegs, the Hudsonian Godwit, and the birds in flight are Dowitchers.

 

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