Monday, 3 October 2011

Long-billed Dowitcher

The local patch is a bit stagnant at the moment, to say the least, can`t even rustle up a Dunlin! With this in mind I decided to stretch my `birding` wings a bit further on Sunday and see if I could catch up with the Long-billed Dowitcher at Freiston Shore in Lincolnshire. This place is only 40 miles away from where I live, so not too far and an easy enough drive.

The bird was easy enough to find, with approximately 40 birders staring through a hawthorn edge, it kind of gave the game away! It was constantly feeding, its head was in the water more than not and so the photo opportunities came few and far between, but I managed a few passable shots and these are the first of several that I will eventually post (I have got quite a few that I want to put up here, but not in one go).

The Long-billed Dowitcher is a vagrant to our shores, breeding in North America and East Siberia, but there are several records every year. The bird (to my eyes) is a bit like a cross-between a Common Snipe and a Black-tailed Godwit, indeed the bird is Snipe sized, with a very long bill and fairly long greenish legs.

After a lifetime of `local` birding and only venturing out further on holidays and rare occasions, I am slowly building a longer list of seen birds as this was another `lifer` to go in the book!


  1. Well done John, another great tick. I haven't been there (Freiston) yet, but must make the effort soon.

  2. HI John...another lifer for the book...congrat's!
    I love these birds with the long bill's, I have some wood carved ones I just love!!
    I went to the Northern part of Maine to visit my daughter this past weekend, so I am trying to catch up on commenting!! I wanted fall foliage photo's! It rained and was so foggy you couldn't see a blooming thing! grrrr!
    We sat talked and drank!!


  3. Fine bird. Congrats on snagging it.

  4. Thanks Roy,
    Freiston is a lovely place, full of all sorts of waders, well worth a visit.

  5. Hi Grace,
    Thankyou. The long bills on these birds are amazing, aren`t they? It makes me wonder how they fit inside an egg before they hatch?! ;)
    We have had nothing but sunshine for the past week and a bit, but now Autumn is coming, but all the leaves have been blown off the trees before any colour can be seen!

  6. Thanks Susan,
    Glad I `got` it! :)


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