A strange visitor

There’s been a new bird around down by the river this year. Throughout spring nights it could be heard flying around emitting endless series of high-pitched whistles, and on a bird-watching excursion with knowledgeable friends of my landlords the other day, they pronounced the presence of common sandpipers.

I didn’t see them. (The sandpipers – obviously, I saw the bird-watchers…)

Yesterday evening, however, I suddenly spotted a large bird – large compared to the usual finch- and thrush-sized birds we generally get around the garden – sitting, eeping loudly and persistently on the tree-stump in the middle of our lawn. I took photos. I looked it up. It was the common sandpiper.

That was rather surprising; you’d think they’d be content enough down by the rocky banks of the river, which is kept rather low this year, but as this was obviously a youngster, I thought I’d just been lucky to catch it out on a somewhat too-far ranging field trip from his parents.

This evening, that same persistent eeping intruded on my lazy time in the garden sofa after work… and there they were. Two of them, sitting on tree-stumps or fence posts, flitting somewhat inexpertly between them at frequent intervals, and being close to – in Bruno Mars’s words – “too young, too dumb to realize…” that perhaps people and gardens weren’t quite the right habitat for them…

Not that I was going to hurt them; I just snuck over and chased them with my camera for a while…




They weren’t entirely happy about my attention, but seemed none the worse for it. Tonight, I hear them down by the river again…


2 responses to “A strange visitor

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