Saturday, September 24, 2016

Coastal BC Birds: Spotted Sandpiper

Spotted Sandpiper

A Spotted Sandpiper visits our protective log boom.
I've always thought of Sandpipers as little birds skittering across a sandy beach, looking for tasty morsels as waves wash up on shore. I recently learned that Sandpipers go inland to frequent rivers, streams, lakes and ponds, especially during summer months.

Wayne was sitting on the couch looking out our sliding glass front door and saw a bird moving along our protective log boom.


I got my camera to get a shot to try and identify it. At first I couldn't find a bird that looked similar. That was because I was looking at pictures with breeding season plumage. When I looked at non-breeding, I found it, a Spotted Sandpiper.

Spotter Sandpipers are a medium sized shore bird that has spots on their breast during breeding season. In winter (looks like we're going to have an early one) they have a white breast with a grayish-brown back.


They tend to be solitary and walk quickly with a bobbing tail. Their range is from Alaska to South America. British Columbia is considered part of their non-breeding territory. Maybe this one is late to depart, or maybe our warm winters have encouraged him to remain.


They eat mostly small insects, other invertebrates and small fish. Our log booms offer a good foraging environment. They build nests along salt and freshwater shorelines in shaded hollows. Females are larger and take a lead role in courtship. Males have a big role in parenting. This is my first sighting in fifteen years of a Sandpiper up at the float cabin on Powell Lake. Hope he or she returns. -- Margy

References: The Cornell Lab of Ornithology All About Birds (online) and Atlas of the Breeding Birds of British Columbia (online).

19 comments:

  1. Hello, the Spotted Sandpiper is a great bird, awesome sighting and photos. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

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    1. I was so excited to see a new bird around our place. - Margy

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  2. Wonderful!
    Hope you are having a great week-end!

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    1. The sun is coming out and tomorrow I'll do some canning of garden veggies. Retirement is a good thing. - Margy

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  3. Always nice to see something new. And retirement isn't just a good thing, it's a great thing!!

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    1. You're right, on both accounts. - Margy

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  4. seeing it for the first time good capture

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    1. Just wish it had been a little closer. - Margy

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  5. Special shots....thank you!
    Happy Sunday!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. - Margy

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  6. We saw a couple of sandpipers while we were in BC, lovely little birds. Once I get my photos organized I'll be sharing them.

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    1. Good thing I saw it that day, I haven't seen one since. - Margy

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  7. sometimes in the fall, i get a sandpiper stopping in here at my pond - usually it is a solitary sandpiper - and yes, living up to its name, it is usually alone.

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    1. I'm assuming this one was migrating since it was a first time to see one. - Margy

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  8. Exciting find, I see them here at the jersey shore. Very nice images!!

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    1. I've always seen them along the ocean shore. I was surprised to see one this far up the lake. - Margy

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  9. How neat. So fortunate for you.
    MB

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  10. Bless their little hearts. They are precious!

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  11. Thanks everyone for stopping by to see my critter post this week. - Margy

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