I had the good fortunate of leading a shorebird walk around Tschache Pool
between 7 am and noon this morning, Saturday May 19th.  This is part of
Montezuma's Guided Shorebird Walk program of which they are allowing access
to the trail along Tschache Pool. This allowed for close views of migrating
shorebirds. It was windy and pouring rain at times but I still had 7 people
including some top-notch birders who were a big help in finding many
shorebird species.

We had the following shorebirds collectively as a group...
LEAST SANDPIPER  estimated at least 1000
DUNLIN (most in breeding plumage) estimated around 150
SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER  estimated around 50
SOLITARY SANDPIPER  1  seen by Jay McGowan.
LESSER YELLOWLEGS  estimated up to 20.
KILLDEER  several
SEMIPALMATED PLOVER  estimated up to 20.
AMERICAN AVOCET!! The bird flew into Tschache briefly and then flew out
(presumably back to Benning)
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER- about 12-14 birds.
AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER  2 birds seen distant by Jay McGowan and Tim Lenz
STILT SANDPIPER- 1 bird seen by Jay / Tim again.
Possible SANDERLING seen by Tim Lenz.

That's 14 species of shorebirds and we estimated up to 2000 birds and
possibly more. Many of the birds were fairly close and made for good
comparisons of least vs semipalmated sandpipers, and white-rumped
sandpipers vs the other peeps. It was a great learning experience.

Here is Jay McGowan's and Tim Lenz's ebird checklist which captures all of
what many of us saw and/or heard collectively.

As a reminder, *next Saturday May 26th at 7 am* we are going to do this
again. Meet at the *Montezuma Visitor's Center 7 am* and we may quickly do
wildlife drive and then walk the trail around part of Tschache Pool like
today. Given that shorebird migration is picking up next weekend could have
even more. Let's hope so!

I would like to extend much thanks to Andrea Van Beusichem and all the fine
folks at Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge
for allowing this excellent opportunity to see our migrating spring

Hope to see many of you next weekend!

Dave Nicosia


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