Sunday, 31 July 2016

Semipalmated Sandpipers, Black Tern, Yellowlegs (20160728) A run to New Brunswick for some shorebirds

Well it has been quite a while since a road trip was the order of the day. I have been interested in seeing the famed Semipalmated Sandpipers of the Bay of Fundy. So I loaded up the truck with some lady friends and headed over to Johnson Mills NB. Our first good sighting was this rooster Pheasant in Au Lac. When we first saw him he was on the top of a dirt mound with his breast showing off the copper colouring. By the time I got situated for a shot he had started to walked off.
Next opportunity was my first ever Indian Pipe. It is a parasitic plant that produces no chlorophyll so it does not turn green. It was pointed out to us by one of the NCC staffers at the bird Interpretaion centre.
At the shore we were greeted with the sight of a couple of hundred 'Pipers flying quite a distance down the beach. The birds seemed to be travelling east this morning, gathering for the falling tide feast to come. Here is a shot of some Semi Pipers along with three Semipalmated Plovers thrown in for good measure.
The birds were gathering at the head of the bay, so we jumped into the truck and headed over to see if we could get a look at a few more birds. It turns out we made the right decision. Here is a shot that doesn't do the mass of birds justice.
I have been told that in order to truly appreciate/represent a large flock of birds or animals it is better to switch to video. so HERE is a short 90 second video. Please turn your sound down as the wind was blowing quite hard. I estimate that there were between 20-30,000 birds in this single flock.
We headed back to Nova Scotia to see if we could spot the vagrant Ruff that had been spotted in Amherst. The sewage lagoons were full of Yellow-legs. We were also able to spot a number of Short-billed Dowitchers.
So I need to pop a couple of shots of the Lesser Yellows into the blog.
Apparently there was one Northern Shoveler in the crew and I managed to find her.
Here is another LYL. While there were quite a few around the always kept distance.
We then took a swing to another area in the hopes of finding a lifer for Angela, Sylvia, and Diane, a Black Tern. As we began our search we put up this Great Blue Heron, one of three we spotted here. This bird was waaaaay off.
Then Diane and I spotted the Terns and I guess the other girls did too as they worked their way over to where we were.
Here is another shot with the bird in a slightly different pose. I was surprised at just how grey this bird looked.
It was a super day with some super company. I am certain we will get together again sometime to search out more subjects. Take some time and put some "wild" in your life!

1 comment:

  1. Great photos Paul--you really captured the day! Thanks again for the drive.