Wood Sandpiper was not on my Australian list. They are not rare birds, nor are they necessarily an easy tick. I knew that they were sometimes seen at the Dandenong Wetlands up by Melbourne. But I had never been there before and knew nothing about the spot except its general location. This is where the Internet and Facebook come into play. I am grateful for both.
I was able to go to the Explore Data section of eBird where the wetlands are a Hotspot. I clicked on a map of the wetlands and had a look. David Adam, who I met through Facebook, had posted some beautiful photos of Wood Sandpipers at the Dandenong Wetlands on the Victorian Birders page a little over a week ago. I sent him a message. He sent me a map with details of where he had seen the sandpipers. In less than twenty minutes I had learned where to park, where to walk and where to look for these birds. I am grateful!
So yesterday mid-morning, Lynn and I headed up the M1 toward Melbourne. We arrived at the wetlands at 12:30pm. It was breezy and threatening rain. With scope, camera and bins, we headed around the oddly intestine shaped ponds. We searched the areas where David had seen them, making a loop around the first three ponds. We were coming back down the main path as it began raining big drops and we spotted three Wood Sandpipers going about their business. We had very satisfying looks and I took some photos. I am grateful.
|There they are, all three together.|
|Dancing in the rain.|
|Big raindrops |
|Showing the barring on the tail.|
So there you have it, a good example of the Facebook connection with birders working! I am very grateful. I will include a map of my own showing where we saw them and where David indicated that he saw them as well.
Birds. Peace. Love. Earth. Laughter. Music.