Recent beach walks

Florence Sanchez

I walked the beach at UCSB jut after dawn on Tuesday and COPR-Sands Beach on Wednesday.  Both locations had a nice assortment of shorebirds but nothing unexpected.  At UCSB, there was a lot of small shorebird activity north of the staircase to the East-facing beach (Semi-Palmated Plovers, Sanderlings, and Least Sandpipers).  Closer to Campus Point, there was a nice assortment of large shorebirds including about 20 Greater Yellowlegs.  In years past, I have been able to pull a Lesser Y-L out of such flocks at this location, but could not locate one this time around.

Campus Point itself had a few Black Turnstones but nothing else of note. The south-facing beach was birdless and the Campus lagoon had only a single Black-necked Stilt and 2 Kildeer.

At Sands beach, the Black-bellied Plovers were out in good number, I'd say close to 100 of them in various stages of molt.  Next to them in abundance were Sanderlings just about everywhere.  There were a few Long-billed Curlews, Marbled Godwits, and 1 Willet.  Snowy Plovers were especially active on Wednesday, both on the beach and in the enclosed area.  I walked all the way west to the next point, where I found a flock of 6 Whimbrel.

The tern Flock on Wednesday included 1 Caspian, 2 Royal and about 20 Elegant Terns.  No sign of the Least Tern that has been hanging around.

Today I made a quick stop at East Beach to check on the Tern flock.  There were only about 200 of them there at 8:00 a.m. and they were in almost constant movement, not necessarily because of disturbance. They were all Elegant Terns except for 1 Royal Tern. The Skimmer flock has increased slightly to 34 this morning.

Florence Sanchez