The Maine birding community is all-a-flitter (never get tired of that old chestnut) about a Snowy Plover being seen at Reid State Park and naturally Ingrid and I had to trek to this near-by beach to see it. As so often happens, we failed in our quest but picked up a few unexpected treasures that made the whole trip worthwhile.
Reid’s front gate ranger directed us to Half Mile Beach and about a quarter of the way up we came upon a roped off Piping Plover enclave (a common sight this time of year on Maine beaches). We hung around for a while, but no Povers (Piping or Snowy), so with tears in our eyes we continued down the beach to Todd’s Point and the banks of Little River.
There our luck changed as we came upon a group of Rudy Turnstones
A dozen or so Black-bellied Plovers
And a lone Sanderling in breeding plumage. Usually we see Sanderlings as they head south after breeding (and their plumage had faded to black and white) . . . so it took us a while to figure out what this orange bird was.
After a couple hours at Reid, Ingrid and I were still anxious to see Piping Plovers . . . so we headed to Popham Beach where we were rewarded. We saw four separate birds, including one nesting in a shelter, built to protect this endangered species from marauding Eagles and Black-backed Gulls.
All in all a good day . . . and we picked up a few warblers as well.