February 3rd   Leave a comment

I was at Balcomie Beach mid-afternoon today just as it was reaching high tide. Something disturbed all the waders roosting further along the shore and large flocks of turnstones and purple sandpipers flew past the beach. Some landed on the strand line on one of the seaweed piles that were half-floating because of the incoming tide. Purple sandpipers always look slightly prissy, but a crowd of them all lifting their bills up and jostling for space on a rapidly diminishing island made me think of normally mild-mannered commuters forced to confront their neighbours, yet simultaneously ignoring them. They kept pretending it wasn’t happening, and the island was big enough for them all until a final wave did for the seaweed pile and they were forced to swim for it. If it is possible for a shorebird to be embarrassed I think they were, and they all hurriedly took off round the corner to a more reliable roost at Fife Ness.

Purple sandpiper

Posted February 3, 2018 by wildcrail in Sightings

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