Friday, August 6, 2010

The Onion Fields: Seven Upland Sandpipers?

--Buff-breasted Sandpiper in the onion fields, September 2004. Photo by Marianne Balkwill
Checked out the onion fields today. Once in the morning, and then again in the evening. The morning proved to be difficult with the sunlight behind some of the shorebirds and people working in the fields.

I originally went to look for Buff-breasted Sandpiper, and thought I saw one but it was too far out to get 100% ID. I struck gold though later on at the end of concession E with 3 Upland Sandpipers!

When I returned after supper I thought for sure I'd see my Buff-breasted Sandpiper this time, but with no luck. Tons of Killdeer, Starlings and Horned Larks seemed pretty much it. I did have a nice adult Black-bellied Plover though. Later I went over to concession C to scan and 4 Upland Sandpipers flew over giving their low, almost watery "whooit whooit whooit" calls! Wow! Seven Upland Sandpipers in one day!? I'm guessing that they are part of the original 3 seeing how I didn't see them in the same spot when I returned this evening, but I guess it is hard to say.


  1. I have not seen Upland Sandpiper in two years! They used to be easy to find in the pastures north of Wallaceburg but most pastures are now gone.
    I will try for the ones at Pelee and hopefully Buff-breasted as well.

  2. We took a brief look after the butterfly count, but birds were too far away in the heat haze.
    There were Killdeer, and something else that could have been a Buffy.