Monday, September 21, 2009

Those of you to my north (ie citizens of the USA and/or Canada) who are still enjoying your summer birds may want to enjoy them whilst you can. On the dive boat this weekend we could actually see a small visible migration event as flocks of swallows headed south from one island to another. I'm assuming this is the advanced guard on the move. We do seem to see birds moving across the islands year round however and the best example of this is how whenever it rains flocks of waders will turn up at every flooded field notwithstanding the fact that the day before when all was dry every wetland on the island was devoid of birds.

semipalm and pecsand

This phenomena brought in some birds I don't see too often the other day. Semi-palmated Plover and Pectoral Sandpiper above and the same sandpiper with a shortbilled dowitcher below.

dowitcher and pecsand

Our relative paucity of waders means these puddles full of birds are a brilliant opportunity for me. I'm tremendously envious of those of you who get to see big flocks of waders regularly. Its rare that I get a chance to see multiple species alongside each other like this and get a proper size comparison of them all (in this case pecsand is a bigger bird than I expected). It also occasionally produces a lifer/island tick (in this case the latter) like this whimbrel. Nice!


Utterly unrelated to all the above is this article I was reading the other day. I'm going to give those quoted the benefit of the doubt and assume the article takes things a little out of context (like how it implies Buddleia is a UK native) and that the point is we should focus our monies in the right areas (something I can emphasise with) but the article is terrible. Really terrible. "Eco-xenophobia"???

1 comment:

jason said...

These are beautiful shots! The odd thing is I hadn't realized these birds (or similar) weren't common in your neck of the woods.

I've noticed the autumn migration has started. One joy of living in Texas is being the funnel for many migratory species.

"Eco-xenophobia"... That's funny. Too bad the article failed so badly at communicating what should be a seriously considered topic.