Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sanderling Calidris alba

All The Birds Of North America: Sanderling Calidris alba

The Sanderling differs from other members of its family in that it lacks a hind toe; a look at the footprints can be a help in identification. During most of the year, small parties of these familiar little sandpipers can be seen running up and down a beach, searching for small mollusks and crustaceans exposed by the backwash of retreating waves. The Sanderling is a worldwide bird, nesting throughout the Arctic and migrating to southernmost Africa and South America.

Identification 7-8V2". Small. Breeding adults have rufous head, back, wings, and upper breast, with blackish mottling; belly white. Winter plumage pale gray above, white below. Bill and legs black. Bold white wing stripe in flight.

Sanderling Calidris alba Voice Flight call a sharp, high-pitched kip or kit.

Sanderling Calidris alba Habitat Primarily along sandy beaches; also on tidal flats, lakeshores, and sandbars.

Range Breeds from Arctic Alaska to Baffin Island. Winters along coast from British Columbia to Mexico and south. Also along Atlantic Coast.

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