Sunday 14 April 2013

Bunche Beach - Fort Myers

If you are ever in the Sanibel/Fort Myers area of Florida you must pay a visit to Bunche Beach Preserve. Bunche Beach is a reliable area for Piping and Wilson's Plover and this winter, host to a Long Billed Curlew. It is important to get the tides right though. I had planned a visit at low tide on a couple of occasions, whilst we were on Sanibel but other commitments meant they did not happen. Eventually I was only left with the option of going on route to the airport before flying to New York, to kill a couple of hours.

On arrival I saw 3 lady birders we huge camera lenses but was informed that it was almost high tide and there were no "peeps" (plovers) about. A decision had to be made, stay and enjoy the walk on the beach or drive  20 minutes and in the wrong direction to Cape Coral to go look for the Burrowing Owls. We decided to say and relax, and I am glad we did.

After ten minutes of siting in the shade I decided to go for a walk along the on the tide line. After a couple of hundred yards I saw some small birds in the distance; Sanderling. Well if there are Sanderling there could be other birds too I thought and kept walking. Another hundred yards and more small birds, this time, not Sanderling but Piping Plover. Result!          

Things then got even better! Out of the corner of my eye I saw three birds drop into the water 50 yards away. I didn't pay much attention at first assuming they'd be Willet, but they weren't, they were American Avocet! Another new bird.

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