[Tweeters] More Details on the Red Necked Stint

Blair Bernson blair at washingtonadvisorygroup.com
Mon Jul 22 22:16:27 PDT 2013

If this is redundant, apologies, just want to get
info out in case others look for the bird. High
tide at Bottle Beach was at 2 PM today. We
arrived around noon and the mudflats were full of
peeps, Black Bellied and Semipalmated Plovers and
MANY Long Billed Dowitchers. Six birders searched
diligently for the Stint without success for 2
hours. Some remained and some left to visit other
spots in the Westport area. We returned around
3:15 and searched every bird diligently for 90
minutes. A few Whimbrels had come in. There was
also a single Dunlin and a single Ruddy
Turnstone. Some birders gave up and left around
4:00. As the tide went out more and more birds
came in. I had basically given up on the Stint
but was amazed at the number of Dowitchers so I
went out onto the mud and systematically counted
EVERY dowitcher. There were at least 750 and
maybe as many as 900. I reported 810. Quite
amazing. While I was doing this I noticed that
some of the birders on shore were pretty focused.
Sure enough, Barb Webster had relocated the bird
and everyone was on it. In a few moments that
included me. The Stint was initially quite close
to shore feeding with the constantly moving
Westerns. As they moved off, so did it. The area
in which it was seen was North (I believe) of
where the main path meets the beach (by the blind)
by perhaps 300 yards (basically go to the beach
and turn right). I do not know if this is where
Chazz first had the bird yesterday but we could
not distinguish any difference between the areas
left and right and during our hours there,
Westerns were feeding in both directions -
although perhaps more often (and definitely so at
lower tide) to the right of the blind.

The Stint was never far away from any Westerns but
once seen was clearly differentiated. The pinkish
red head/neck was easily seen. We saw it in
scopes, with bins and even with naked eye. With
scope or bins the spotted necklace below the neck
was visible. To me the bird was approximately the
same size as the Westerns and definitely not as
large as Sanderlings (there were no Sanderlings at
Bottle Beach but George Pagos and I had a few at
Grayland feeding next to Westerns and we took
mental notes for comparison.

Some observers felt that the wings were relatively
long, longer than the Westerns. I felt the bill
was somewhat longer than expected but not dispositive.

There were hundreds of peeps on the beach so the
bird could easily be missed. If you give it a
go...patience, patience and look at EVERY bird.
It never stood still. Easy to track when it ran
but difficult to find again when it flew with the
flock. Pictures were not possible with my slowly
focusing camera. It did fly off several times,
but was always found again for maybe 25 minutes
then not again and we all left...happy.

Blair Bernson

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