July 8th   Leave a comment

Today’s star wader at Balcomie was a whimbrel. Two curlews flew up from the rocks and I noticed one was much smaller than the other. A quick check of its bill shape (whimbrels have an initially mostly straight bill with the decurve at the end) confirmed it as a whimbrel. I whistled at it – the seven note whistle of a whimbrel is about the easiest bird call to imitate. And it checked its flight, came back to look at me, whistling as well. Whimbrels love company when they migrate and generally only hang out with curlews when there are no other whimbrels about. I couldn’t resist whistling at the whimbrel again as it flew off looking for a real whimbrel to join. It checked and came back whistling at me once more before heading off to rejoin the curlew, hopefully not too disappointed by my deception. But there is something magical about calling to a wild bird and having it respond to you. And especially so when that bird is a literally globe-trotting whimbrel. The all time champion migrant bird in my opinion.


Posted July 8, 2017 by wildcrail in Sightings

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