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This morning, in my continuing Bird-A-Day quest, I visited Little  
Estero Island Critical Wildlife Area in Ft. Myers beach, Lee County.  
There wasn't much around except the more common shorebird species when  
all of a sudden, a Long-billed Curlew flew in. I studied this bird for  
over five minutes before it flew off. It may be the same one that has  
been frequented Bunche Beach this past winter and in other years.  
Prior to seeing this bird, I saw a Whimbrel foraging in the grass  
along Estero Blvd. at Lovers Key State Park so the comparison these  
birds was fresh in my mind. On the north side of Big Carlos Pass  
behind the Island's End Condominiums on Ft. Myers Beach, there were no  
less than 13 American Oystercatchers, 4 Snowy Plovers, several  
Wilson's Plovers, one with a furball of a baby on stilts running  
around as its mother whistled for it. There were also 45-50 Red Knots,  
most in breeding plumage, a few Short-billed Dowitchers plus the usual  
Willets, Sanderlings, one Least Sandpiper, Black-bellied &  
Semipalmated Plovers, Ruddy Turnstones, Dunlin, etc. In addition to  
the hordes of breeding Least Terns, there were two Common Terns  
present as well as a somewhat late(?) Red-breasted Merganser on this  
beach.

Good birding!

Vincent P. Lucas
Naples, FL
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/leppyone/

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