Monday, September 28, 2009

Waiting the Mega Flock

Yes... I know is still september but I was hoping to find earlier this year the mega flock of migratory sandpipers. Every year, a huge number of sandpipers (mostly Western and Semipalmated) spent the winter in Panama's Upper Bay, most of them arriving in october. It is the best month to look for vagrants among the thousands of peeps. Anyway, I tried yesterday the usual spots (Costa del Este and Panama Viejo) finding only the usual suspects (Black-bellied Plovers, Whimbrels, Willets, Black-necked Stilts, Greater Yellowlegs, and few Semipalmated and Western Sandpipers) in Costa del Este. My heart accelerated for a second when I saw a peep with an unusual rusty back (thinking on a MUCH rarer Stint or something like that) but otherwise identical to the accompanying Western Sandpipers. It was a lot of fun to watch the noisy Spotted Sandpipers doing nothing else but to chase each other... when do they eat? Of course, there were hundreds of residents birds, including pelicans, egrets and cormorants in the beach. In Panama Viejo I saw again the Gull-billed Terns and the adult Ring-billed Gull among the Laughings close to the Visitor Center, but the sandpipers were too far away even for my binoculars. Well, I suppose that I must be kept waiting.

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