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Monday, January 27, 2014

Shorebird flock at sunset


Mixed shorebird flock in Bodega Harbor, 26 January 2014


Dunlin, Sanderlings, Western Sandpipers, and Least Sandpipers.

2 comments:

Claudia said...

I must admit, after your list of the birds that occur in the mixed flock, I thought you were going to describe how we could identify each of them from their flying silhouettes!

Jackie Sones said...

:) I actually wasn't going to include a list of species at all this time...instead focusing on just enjoying the image of hundreds of sandpipers moving together in unison. Eric thought readers would want to know "who" was in the flock, so I added the species list at the end. If you look *very* closely, going from bird to bird, you might be able to pick out subtle differences. Dunlin are the dominant species in this flock. Sanderlings are paler (grayer) with more prominent white wing stripes. Western Sandpipers and Least Sandpipers are smaller overall and also have shorter bills than the Dunlin. I think you can probably pick out a few Sanderlings and a few Western and Least sandpipers if you try hard enough (although Westerns and Leasts will be difficult to differentiate from each other), but it will be challenging!