Not having been getting out as much as I used to, I headed out to Boundary Bay this afternoon. It was mixed sun and cloud and the tide was out when starting my walk along the mud flats. Not seeing much initially,
… I did come across a small group of Long-billed Dowitchers that were quite cooperative.
There were a few Baird’s Sandpiper present as well. Then things started to pick up,
… with hundreds of Pectoral Sandpipers arriving. With all of the Pectoral Sandpiper present, the search was then on for a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper. A Northern Harrier kept hampering these efforts hunting along the dyke and flushing the shorebirds.
My patience was eventually rewarded when I found this lone Sharp-tailed Sandpiper.
With some good birds being seen in Boundary Bay recently I headed out there this afternoon. I could not get out there until later than I would have liked. It was overcast and the tide was just starting to make its way in as I headed west along the tidal flats from 104 St. While the plover flock as active along the water line, I was surprised at the lack of shorebirds in closer to the dyke.
There was this lone Pectoral Sandpiper,
… and a Baird’s Sandpiper with an injured eye. On reaching the pilings the rising tide forced me up on to the dyke.
I decided to stick around a little longer as there were still lots of birds active along the beach. Just west of the pilings,
… the Franklin’s Gull spotted the other day was present again. Continuing west a small group of mixed shorebirds landed close to the dyke. A quick scan of the group showed Pectoral Sandpiper, Baird’s Sandpiper (including the one with the injured eye),
… and the one I had been hoping to see, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper. I signalled a few other patient birders further to the east so they could see the Sharp-tailed before it got too dark. Now I will just have to hope for another opportunity with this bird under better conditions.
On the tidal flats at Boundary Bay prior to the high tide there were lots of shorebirds around again this afternoon.
The only ones that seemed willing to cooperate with me were some Baird’s Sandpiper.
With a little patience they settled in with me there,
… continuing to forage amongst the seaweed.
As the tide came in I met up with Roger and John who had been watching the plover flocks. They had seen the Red Knots and Marbled Godwit that have been around the last few days. Neither them or myself had seen a Buff-breasted Sandpiper. We all headed back up on to the dyke and headed west towards the pilings. In that area Roger spotted a juvenile Ruff. We saw it fly west, circle high overhead and then drop back down to the beach. After checking all the way to 96 St. we could not relocate the bird. Roger left us at this point and John and I headed back still trying to relocate the Ruff. He had also heard from another birder that there were four Buff-breasted Sandpipers to the east closer to 112 St.
Just west of 104 St. we came across Mike who had located the Ruff.
Not wanting to spook the bird I stayed up on the dyke initially.
After almost an hour of watching and photographing,
… I had an opportunity to move down from the dyke amongst the logs.
This provided a closer and better vantage point for photos.
Cannot ask for much more than this with a fairly rare visitor like the Ruff.