[Tweeters] Big shorebird flock at Bayview-Edison Rd, Skagit County

Ray White rw at seanet.com
Wed Mar 25 12:48:13 PDT 2009

On March 24, about 3:30 pm (heavily overcast, light rain), I observed a large flock of shorebirds in vast muddy fields south of Bayview-Edison Road's 90-degree turn east of where it joins Sammish Island Road. The flock included at least 50 (probably not as amany as 100) Black-bellied Plovers and thousands of what were probably Least Sandpipers. I had only 10x binocs (no scope), and the birds did not come close enough to allow positive ID of the sandpipers (could not determine leg color or bill shape), but they all looked the same, with greater white belly extent and darker upper body than might apply for Westerns and Semipalmateds, and the flock---usually large sub-flocks, seldom the whole flock---had wheeling flight, as Sibley describes. Flock flight reminded me of Dunlin, but the birds seemed too small. Size could be judged by comparison with the Black-bellied Plovers.

Has anyone else seen this flock and can help with the sandpiper ID?

Ray White

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