Friday, August 24, 2012

Common Sandpiper

During my late afternoon cycle-ride along the Western Yar Estuary yesterday I had a brief glimpse of my first local Common Sandpiper as it flew across the estuary in the distance.

I was really pleased when I got a closer glimpse at Kingfisher Bridge first thing this morning.

This is almost certainly an adult bird that has been making its way south as it heads towards its winter quarters. It's got a long way to go because it will spend the winter in western Africa, south of the Sahara. The young birds start to move south from their northern breeding grounds in September. You can see the characteristic bobbing action of this bird - a behaviour known as 'teetering' - as it looks for insects and other invertebrates on the surface of the mud.

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