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This afternoon I made it up to Spoonbill Pond to
add the Black-necked Stilts to my year list. I found
one immediately in front of the log with the Cormorants
on it, and yes, if you go up there tomorrow or next
week the Cormorants will be on that log. The bird
remained in front of the log for the 30 minutes or so
that I was there, actively feeding. At least four more
individuals were present. One was foraging in the
vegetation on the far side of the pond so there could
be more not readily visible. Some Wigeon were also
present along with many Tree Swallows and a decent
number of Northern Rough-wings.

Heading down to Huguenot I pulled into the parking
lot outside the gate in hopes of finding the White-winged
Dove and White-throated Sparrows that had been seen
there recently.

I scanned the lagoon from the pavilion in search of Least
Terns (no luck). On the shoreline opposite I saw a large
shorebird of apparent cinnamon color that also seemed
much large than adjacent birds, including some Willets.
Something flushed all the shorebirds and the one I was
looking at hesitated before taking off as well. When it did,
the cinnamon color was even more apparent, despite the
distance and heat haze. It was also clear that the bird did
not have the large white patches on the wings indicative
of a Willet.

I decided to enter the park and drove straight to the area
where the bird had been. He was easily located at the
water's edge. I walked out as far as I could without
flushing him to get some pictures. He did fly but landed
nearby. I was able to get several shots, good enough for
documentation purposes. For the most part, he stayed
close to or in the spartina both along the shore as well as
a little further back from the water, sometimes foraging in
some pretty dense vegetation. In the past at this location
in was more usual to see them on the mud flats, along
the water's edge or in shallow water.

Godwits used to be regular winter residents here but the
last time I think I saw one was January of 2011 and I think
the time before that was a few years prior. Both Marbled
Godwit and Long-billed Curlew seem to have become
primarily short duration stop over migrants here although
still regular in other parts of the state.

There was also a singing Sedge Wren in the park.

Photos of the Godwit can be found here:

http://www.pbase.com/bob_richter/image/159583086

That link will take you to one image. From there select
"next image" or get into the gallery index page.

Bob Richter
Jacksonville


-- 
http://www.pbase.com/Bob_Richter

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