Welcome Again, Shorbies! – 10,000 Birds

Welcome Again, Shorbies!  – 10,000 Birds

If you realize me, then you’re effectively conscious of how a lot I like shorebirds. Even when writing my ebook with all ardent efforts to stay unbiased; the part on Sandpipers & Allies was by far the longest – surpassing mega-families like Thraupidae and Tyrannidae. There’s something – many issues actually – about members of this household that haven’t solely taken a maintain of me, nevertheless it nearly feels as if they’ve taken root inside my very own being.

See, being in tune with the migration of tiny, globe-trotting birds looks like a secret window to a life so grand we could have to every dwell a number of occasions to start to fathom it. How can one thing so miniscule bust out of an opaque egg and instantly start the preparation for a thousand-mile journey – that’s typically made with none grownup lodging – is totally past this human’s understanding. I, like lots of you I am positive, spent a few years helpless; I used to be effectively into my teenagers earlier than I used to be allowed to remain at dwelling on my own, far much less go wherever!

Anyway, I digress. Such is life with me when I’ve shorebirds – or shorbs, or shorbies, or a random unintelligible noise after I see them fluff their feathers – on my thoughts. Suffice to say I’m thrilled to be seeing them once more.

A pair days in the past I paid a go to to (what was) a wetland in southwest Tobago. Presently, the birds spend their time feeding within the artifical drainage system inside what’s now designated to be some type of “gated group” in just a few years. I am hoping it would not come to go, as there’s little completed to control issues like chemical utilization and so forth in T&T. Most of the smaller species of shorebirds (such because the already endangered – technically Close to Threatened – Semi-palmated Sandpiper) feed on biofilm and are extraordinarily vulnerable to poisonous chemical compounds. Others feed on small invertebrates and fish – of which there nonetheless is a bounty inside these drains. For now, it stays one of many go-to areas on the island to look at migratory shorebirds.

A Semi-palmated Sandpiper feeds on the water’s edge.

Noticed Sandpipers are among the mostly seen shorebirds in T&T, not likely due to their absolute quantity however extra so as a result of their prevalence in numerous habitats close to to water.

A Better Yellowlegs is pursued by one other after having nabbed a small fish.

Lesser Yellowlegs can simply be confused with the aforementioned species besides when they’re standing subsequent to one another.

Sometimes birds of the coast, it was a bit odd to see a number of Willets on this location. One among these gave the impression to be pals with the lone Whimbrel current – ​​the 2 had been inseparable. Actually it was comical to see each birds feed collectively, get flushed collectively, fly collectively – it actually acquired me eager about what has been their historical past, and the way a lot of it was shared by these two people. Did they journey collectively? Have been they hatched close to to one another? Did one present some help to the opposite in its time of want? I noticed them for a while, left and returned, they usually had been nonetheless collectively. After they shifted location, they did so collectively. One thing else shorebird-related to maintain me up at evening.


There was additionally a Least Sandpiper on the highway that I did not {photograph}, in addition to a Pectoral Sandpiper I opted to not {photograph} because it wasn’t in the most effective of settings. I went to show the car round, and by the point I returned, it was gone.

You possibly can view the total checklist of that quick morning session right here.

Yesterday I spent a pair hours at one other location on Tobago with extra Noticed Sandpiperssome Semipalmated Ploversand arguably one in all my favourite shorebirds of all – a White-rumped Sandpiper. I am going to spare you the small print as to why I adore it a lot. This put up would go on perpetually!

What shorebirds have you ever been seeing as they journey southward?