Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Cabo da Praia strikes again

I've been on the Azores since Saturday, but there's one place like no other that just has you coming back for more at this time of the year. And so it was, after my flight from Flores this morning, as soon as I landed on Terceira I wanted to get to 'the quarry' at Cabo da Praia.There's always a sense of anticipation as you just know there's rare to score in there. One of the most exciting places in the WP. And today was no exception, with the first Terek Sandpiper for the Azores completely shocking me, as I located it roosting in with the Sanderling flock! A vagrant in the true sense of the word, lost in the Atlantic.
adult Terek Sandpiper Cabo da Praia, Terceira 28 August 2012

east meets west...
What with a Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs on Sao Miguel today, it was inevitable there'd be the odd yank and indeed there was - 4 Pec Sands were fresh in, with three of them coming in, circling and feeding up. An adult White-rumped Sandpiper too, joining the regular Hudsonian Whimbrel and Semipalmated Plover.
Bonaparte's Sanpiper - the one from the west with the white rump

Hudsonian Whimbrel
So that was today. Apart from swimming under waterfalls and enjoying the piscinas naturales at Faja Grande in the (too) nice weather, and wishing it was a month or so on, I did squeeze in some birding on Flores. Covered all the sites, did a bit of scouting for sites later on in the autumn. Also came up with a Pied-billed Grebe at Lagoa Branca, a Spotted Sandpiper at Lagoa Lomba and at least one decent Black Duck, a drake, at Lagoa Branca so all was not lost. No Eastern Kingbird, Louisiana Waterthrush or Swallow-tailed Kite this time though...

And of course, a post wouldn't be complete without the mention of gulls. Rest assured plenty of shots of Azorean Yellow-legged Gulls taken. Also the Azores is one of the best places to look at Roseate Terns so good to see (and photograph) a lot of juveniles on this trip.

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