Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Willet Counting Day 3

I put in by the sea and paddle upriver on the beginning of a flood tide with a fresh breeze that seems to be coming mostly down the coast.  It is a tailwind or a headwind depending on which meander I happen to be located in.
I count Willets.  By the time I've reached the railroad bridge I've tallied seventeen, plus a few Yellow-Legs and three Red Throated Loons.

Red Throated Loon
Above the railroad bridge the shore is well populated by Yellow-Legs.  I don't see any Willets until I get into the Big Bends where I spot four....making twenty one for the count.

I turn back from the Big Bends.  Past experience is that there won't be an Willets up higher.  They prefer wide open spaces, especially grassland.  Perhaps the upper marsh isn't wide enough to hold a minimal number of Willets.  They are sentinel birds and depend on each other to warn all of any intruders.
Oyster Catcher and two Mallards
I spot an Oyster Catcher just before reaching the confluence of the Neck and East Rivers.

The Count
April 19  =  1
April 23  = 15
April 24  = 21

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