Semipalmated Sandpipers

Anne and I saw these birds yesterday on the beach, but neither of us had a good camera then. There was a certain otherness about them that distinguished them from the more normal Spotted sandpipers that we’ve been seeing all summer. We saw their tracks all up and down the beach. We also saw the tracks of another animal, an as yet unidentified mammal. Those tracks also ran the length of the beach, but unlike the sandpiper tracks which went every which way, this animal was moving with a purpose. The tracks looked too big to be those of the mink that we saw earlier this summer, but they also seemed too small to belong to any of the dogs that live on the beach. It’s a mystery. I saw the new sandpipers again today and had my camera in hand and got these pictures. I’ve classified them as Semipalmated sandpipers. There was an adult and four juveniles, although there were more yesterday. They are just passing through. They breed in the Arctic and we’ve seen them before in the Keys, where they winter. They have quite the epic migration. In other bird news, while I was writing this post, a juvenile robin slammed into a sleeping porch window. It left a greasy smudge and a few feathers on the glass. Anne and I ran outside and photographed it as it was sitting still stunned on the ground. It soon tired of us though and hopped away beneath the cabin. So, I guess that it will be alright.

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