Sunday 24 March 2013

Wader Quest species seen n° 13: White-rumped Sandpiper

White-rumped Sandpiper Calidris fuscicollis

Head detail: Brazil October 2011

1st November. Cley NNT reserve, Norfolk England. 

Nothing unlucky about number 13 on this list!

We weren't expecting to see this on day one, nor necessarily in the UK at all. We heard a report of two on the NNT reserve at Cley and having whizzed up there from Titchwell, after some searching, we eventually found one of the birds on Pat's Pool. At the time of writing this is the only one of this species we have seen although we do expect to see them in April in Louisiana and probably again in November in Brazil.

1st winter: October 2011
This species is an annual vagrant to the UK and Europe. Its normal breeding range is in the high Canadian and Alaskan arctic and then migrating south in one hop across the Atlantic to South America and then on in shorter hops as far as Tierra del Fuego. On the northward journey they travel up across Central America and then over the North American continent to their breeding grounds. We used to encounter them in small numbers along the SE Brazil coast on passage, the biggest flock being of 17 birds. These were all juvenile birds and proved to be very approachable unlike the bird at Cley, that remained very distant at all times.

Juvenile: Brazil October 2011
White-rumped Sandpiper is Considered of Least Concern by Birdlife International It has a global population estimated between 50,000 and 100,000 and although the population trend is not certain it is thought to be decreasing because of habitat loss.

Brazil October 2011

Birdlife International (2013) Species factsheet: Calidris fuscicollis. Downloaded from on 06/02/2013

del Hoyo, J., Elliot, A. & Sargatal, J. eds (1996). Handbook of the Birds of the World. Vol. 3. Hoatzins to Auks. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.

Juvenile: Brazil October 2011

For more information on this species see:

Birdlife International species factsheet:

Internet Bird Collection:

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