Monday, 19 August 2013

Back for the Pec!

Having obtained nice views of the Pectoral Sandpiper on Saturday at Reculver and a few distant efforts I wanted to give it another go for some better views and shots this morning, hoping that the weekend birders would have seen it well and got their shots and that the majority of dog walkers, cyclists and joggers would be working today. I left home quite early at 5.30am and tried again inland for the Mandarin which surprise, surprise, I failed to connect with again but I did see good numbers of Little Grebe with a few Tufted Duck. I then drove over to Chambers Wall where I walked down to Coldharbour and hoped the Pectoral Sandpiper would still be around. On arriving a quick scan revealed very little out on the mud, just a few Black headed Gull loafing around so I thought I would have a walk to the east end to see if the Wood Sandpipers were present. Although the sun was now shining nicely a scan here revealed no Wood Sandpiper but a few Redshank and a smaller wader. A closer scan revealed it was the Pectoral Sandpiper. I rattled off a few distant efforts before I hatched a plan to try and get a better image. I walked back to where it had been present on Saturday and got myself into a better position where I hoped it would fly into view and feed. I could see a cyclist coming my way in the distance and armed with his bright green jacket I just thought they might move to where I was waiting. Bingo, no sooner as he past them the Redshank all took flight and flew towards me with the Pectoral Sandpiper and landed out on the mud. I thought this was going to be my chance of some better shots and I had just started to take some photos when suddenly they all took flight again as a Sparrowhawk flew low through the lagoon.

Pectoral Sandpiper

I watched the flock gain height and fly towards the Oyster farm where they appeared to drop down. I have noticed on a few occasions that the Pectoral Sandpiper has flown west and I assume that it is flying in to the Oyster farm to roost with the other waders before flying back later in the day. I carried on in the area for a further hour or so noting 1 Greenshank, 3 Common Sandpiper, 4 Oystercatcher, 10 Yellow Wagtail, 6 Shelduck, c57 Ringed Plover, 1 Dunlin, 1 Sandwich Tern, 4 Teal, 1 Whimbrel, 2 Grey Plover and a few Sanderling flying west providing a quick photo opportunity. Partial success this morning with at least a better image than on Saturday and a nice chance to see it again anyway.

Sanderling and Ringed Plover


  1. Dont you just hate them Sprawks Marc :-) They have foiled many a plan of mine too!

    Got your shot though!

  2. Brilliant Pectoral Sandpiper, you have done it.

  3. Nice shot Marc. Arrived at Coldharbour abot 11.oo and found John and MickD who put me onto the Pec. Rather distant. Moved round to the steps down to the lagoon to get the Greenshank. sat there for some three hours and the Pec came into the little bay opposite the steps for a short while.No woodsands seen by me or any of the others.

  4. Lovely pics, Marc, especially the flight!
    What a lovely bird!
    You are quite taken by bird photography these days!
    I am leaving for a couple of days to take pics of S. danae, pedemontanum and depressulum, so localized in France.
    Cheerio, keep up the good pics!