BIRD 2

Bird Watching (UK) - - September Id Challenge -

Here we have a wader ap­par­ently on a wet beach, hav­ing a bit of a preen. Start­ing with struc­ture, the black legs seem quite short and the head rel­a­tively large for a wader. The usual trend is for a rel­a­tively large head to im­ply a smaller bird (big­ger birds have smaller heads, in gen­eral). So, this one ap­pears to be a small, short-legged, rounded-look­ing, al­most dumpy wader. Small, dumpy waders tend to be in the genus of sand­pipers, Calidris. But which calidrid is this? Let’s turn to plumage. It is quite a strik­ingly black-and­white (with a hint of buff) bird; look­ing clean white on the belly and what lit­tle of the breast we can see; and with black-cen­tred wing feath­ers and a dark-streaked crown. Such a com­bi­na­tion is unique to ju­ve­nile San­der­ling.

KEY FEA­TURES †Rel­a­tively large head im­plies small size †Black-and-white with a hint of buff †Short­ish black legs †Dark-cen­tred wing feath­ers and dark streaked crown

Black-cen­tred wing feath­ers Dark-streaked crown Buffy shoul­der mark Clean white un­der­parts

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