Monday, August 30, 2010

Southward Ho!

Cape Breton, Nova Scotia isn't exactly on the major migration route for northbound shorebirds, but we are dead center on for Southward Migration!  During migration, shorebirds occur primarily in shallowly flooded coastal or freshwater wetlands or on intertidal mud flats.

Well, guess where I paddled on Sunday?  Correct!  Intertidal mudflats, that even during high tide, they are so shallow, we had to proceed with caution so we wouldn't continually get grounded.  Canals interwoven among themselves.  Mud flats, forest, floating bogs, brackish backwaters, and open ocean across the dunes.

The birds were bountiful.  Semi-palmated Plovers, Semi-palmated Sandpipers, Short-billed Dowitchers, Black-bellied Plovers, Greater Yellowlegs, Sanderlings.........I'm sure I'm forgetting a few.  And of course, resident eagles and osprey made multiple appearances.

So busy feeding, we could drift right up to the sandbars/mudflats 

and watch without disturbing even the resting birds. 

It was peaceful, exciting, and relaxing all rolled into one.

I loved the way they'd all lift at once, 

then land again in the exact same spot.

I will add a photo of the Black-bellies with S.B.Dowitcher, although it isn't of the greatest quality.

But to compensate, here are a few additional images while I ponder the miracle of from whence they came - the arctic, circumpolar, the sub-arctic; and where they are going - it just blows me away!

Safe journey, my feathered friends!

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This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Karen: What a neat post. Love all the shore birds.

Sylvia K said...

Great post, Karen! I love going down to the beach and watching the birds! Terrific captures and such a fun post for the day! Hope you have a lovely week!


Carver said...

Fantastic sequence of shots of the birds. Great post from your part of the world.

J Bar said...

Terrific photos.

SandyCarlson said...

So much to see! These are wonderful.

BraCom (Bram) said...

Thank you for sharing these beautiful landscape and bird photos

Have a nice week,
Greetings, Bram

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Caroline said...

Wow, you have a fantastic birding spot there! It would blow my mind!

Julie said...

I am just learning to be a bird-watcher and wish I had been one all my life. I agree with you about the awe and the peace. It sends me mad trying to capture them on the wing though. But such pleasure ... thank you for this post.

walk2write said...

What a great place to gather strength! I mean your post as well as the shoot site. It is wonderful to ponder where those birds came from, where they're headed, and how they instinctively know the itinerary.

Roy said...

Brilliant to see such a variety Karen, what a great area to be in.

Kat Mortensen said...

Karen, how come I didn't even know about this blog?

These birds remind me of kildeer.

I'll be back when I can. (Putting you in my feedreader.)


The Early Birder said...

Hi Karen. Migration wader just made my day. Great location. FAB.

Rambling Woods said...

What a wonderful opportunity..I get the excitement and relaxation....