October Shorebirds!


Just yesterday I was envying Matt Zeitler’s good shorebird day in Orange County.  I haven’t had any shorebirds here in Sullivan County in a couple of weeks.  Today I went out looking for ducks and finches.  As things often go, shorebirds were the highlight of the day. I  had a single Killdeer at the Apollo, then four Pectoral Sandpipers (above) at Sullivan County Community College.  From there I went to Swan Lake, where all of the good birds continue (Red-necked Grebe, Bonaparte’s Gulls etc.)  I then headed to Resnick Road in Bethel where I had had some decent birds a couple of weeks back.  I first noticed a large flock of Killdeer, I was able to count 25 and there may have been more.  As I scanned them, I realized there was a Pectoral Sandpiper right in front of me.  A bit more looking turned up 2 more!  As I watched the birds it became apparent there was a large number of American Pipits still present.  Ultimately, they numbered about 60 birds.  While I was counting them, I noticed something foraging in a small crater in the field. (this field is pock marked with cattle hoof prints making it an area of rugged terrain) I then realized the bird was a mostly hidden Wilson’s Snipe, (below) my first of the fall.  It suddenly began running, ultimately to attack a second snipe about ten feet away.  When they settled down, you’d think they were buddies!  As an aside, the two SURF SCOTERS on Yankee Lake were present again this morning after not being seen yesterday!  More good birding!


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3 Responses to October Shorebirds!

  1. Any day with shorebirds is a good day in my book, John. Love the Pecs and the Snipe is so well camouflaged you can barely see it. You have had a great fall of birding, no doubt about it.

  2. Thanks Matt! And BTW, there are two snipe! One even harder to see just to the left of the one you mention!

  3. Oh that’s so funny – they really are well camouflaged!

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