This afternoon I decided to head down to Plymouth Beach to try and get some shorebirds that I didn’t have this year. Specifically the Red Knot, a small shorebird with a rusty colored head and chest and brownish-gray wings. Another target bird was the Black Skimmer, which has one of the largest bills of any bird in the country.
When I arrived I noticed that the beach was full of people, which unfortunately meant that most of the shorebirds would be feeding in the mudflats instead. I started walking down the sandy road that had a few spots where I could check out the mudflats. When I got down to the water, all I could see were a few Willets and a large mixed flock of gulls foraging for food.
I continued walking for about half a mile before I came across another place where I could see the mudflats. Unfortunately, just like the first stop, this place was pretty much empty. The same old gulls and Willets that I saw earlier. I repeated this a few more times with the same results before deciding to turn around and start walking back. This time I decided to walk closer to the water in hopes of finding some smaller birds that I had missed on the way out.
Luckily, as I was walking back to the car, I found a small flock of Least Terns and got to watch them hunt for a while by diving straight into the water before continuing on. Unluckily, my mom, who I was birding with on this trip, accidentally got stuck in the mud having to pull her shoes out of the ground. The rest of the walk back was pretty uneventful, I saw a few more Willets and some more terns hunting. But the highlight of the walk was definitely watching a pair of Ospreys fishing for food in the small cove with all the other gulls and terns.
Although I didn’t see any of my target birds it was still a fun trip. I got to see some of my favorite local birds hunting and fishing right around me.