Saturday, August 23, 2014

A Little Bit of Sabine's in Your Life

A sunrise on Lake Superior at Whitefish Point
My last few days of waterbird counting here at Whitefish Point, have ended up being fairly interesting.  Numbers have still been on the low side, but then again, it is only August.  Considering that I spend at least eight hours watching the lake each day, some good bird sightings are expected.  

The most exciting bird came on Thursday when I spotted an interesting gull flying directly away from me.  As it descended to land on the water, it flashed its distinctive back pattern.  It was a Sabine's Gull!  This juvenile spent five minutes or so flying in the vicinity of the point and eventually landed offshore again.  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to keep track of it once it landed.  Fog rolled in soon after; then there was no chance in relocating the bird.

A terrible photo of the Sabine's Gull.
There is some great shorebird habitat at the point and consequently, the shorebirds continue to be the main highlight.  The most uncommon shorebird to show up so far has been a Willet, which could end up being my only Willet of the count.  Black-bellied Plovers, Ruddy Turnstones, and Baird's Sandpipers keep it interesting, and are around most days.

Common Loon flying over the point.
 -Eric

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