Date: 5/5/18 8:39 pm
From: Paul Conover <zoiseaux...>
Subject: [LABIRD-L] LOS Shorebirding Field Trip

        The LOS shorebird field trip today had excellent weather, a
great group, and some great sights and sightings. The trip started out
in Jennings this morning with cool north winds and lightly overcast
skies that were excellent for shorebird viewing. We worked our way south
with a lot of east and west side-turns down quiet country roads, looking
for shorebird fields. With changes in rice culture, the muddy open
fields full of birds that used to be commonplace have become amazingly
scarce, replaced by precision-planted fields that birds can tuck
themselves away in. However, we did luck onto a nice pasture with
displaying Buff-breasted Sandpipers, another field with a good
comparison of alternate-plumage Golden and Black-bellied plovers, and a
few fields that offered small numbers of birds but great looks. We also
got in a few nice non-shorebird stops, including a scenic Cave Swallow
nesting colony in the middle of miles of rice fields.

         Our last shorebird stop was the shorebird spectacle on
Rutherford Beach Road that others have been posting or eBirding about
for a week or so, an expanse of mudflats densely speckled with thousands
of shorebirds composed largely of Stilt Sandpipers, Semipalmated
Sandpipers, and Wilson's Phalarope. The numbers were unbelievable, and
the looks up close and in optimum light.

        When the sun finally came out the temperature rose quickly, so
we retired to the shade of Willow Island to look for migrant songbirds.
Migrant action was slow, but what migrants were there showed off well.

Paul Conover

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