Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Another thing I don't see too often...

Living here on the mountain means I have a ringside seat to observe the goings on in the woods around me. As woodland habitats go, Roundtop is great. It is not, however, a place where I normally see many sandpipers.

Several places nearby are decent for shorebirds. The Susquehanna River serves as a major migration route. The nearby Pinchot Lake can also be decent for shorebirds. Roundtop Mtn. doesn’t fall into the decent range for shorebirds. Roundtop does have a few small ponds, though, and perhaps that and its proximity to decent shorebird paths combines to occasionally bring me a sandpiper to look at.

Today’s photo of a spotted sandpiper is one of the few I semi-regularly get to see here. The birds never stay long. This is just a pit stop for them. This bird has been here since at least Saturday and will likely disappear in another day or so. In the fall, I might get to see them again.

Spotted sandpipers are common and the kind most likely to be found around little ponds like those at Roundtop. Most self-respecting sandpipers wouldn’t deign to stop here, let alone dip their toes in the waters of ponds this small. Spotted sandpipers seem comfortable in small ponds or in the woods. I’ve seen them sitting on logs sticking up out of lakes. Other sandpipers probably think they’re odd.


Woodswalker said...

Love those sandpipers! As they run along close to the water they bob their little butts up and down constantly. I see them frequently along the Hudson River here in Saratoga County NY. I stumbled on a nest, once, on a gravelly island in the middle of the river. Cool! We usually think of sandpipers as ocean shorebirds, but they do like inland waterways, too. Thanks for the photo. Did you see the one I posted on my blog?

Carolyn H said...

Jackie: Yes, I saw your sandpiper. At least yours was completely visible. I must have 8-10 shots of pieces of that sandpiper--his butt, his belly, the bill. I never did get a clear shot of its entire body! They move pretty fast, too!

Carolyn H.