Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Spotted Sandpiper, Stocks Reservoir, Lancashire

May 18, 2010:
This extreme local rarity apparently arrived at the reservoir two days ago but wasn't identified as such until yesterday. This morning it was visible for a while along the shore-line to the right of the first hide where it spent much of its time feeding. Quite often it was difficult to pick out amongst the stones on the shore. At least three Common Sandpipers were nearby and one of them was quickly chased away by the Spotted when it came too close.

It made occasional short flights, once to the spit on the opposite shore but soon came back to its original place. The yellowish legs, orange-red bill with a black tip, prominent white eye-stripe and heavily spotted breast confirmed it as a summer-plumaged adult. It was a difficult subject to photograph being small, distant and mobile but it was satisfying to have a record at least. This is only the fourth occurrence of the bird in Lancashire and the first since 1987.

More Cyprus photos are too follow.

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