Saturday, 9 October 2010

Who's afraid of Yellow and Green?

The first bird that appeared this morning in front of a new hide was this Grey Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea/Grote Gele Kwikstaart) in winter plumage. He (or she) walked straight to the spot where I wanted the bird to be, i.e., so that it was all surrounded by gold-tainted water (caused by the sunlit reed beds at the opposing shore).
After a couple of minutes it was scared off by a Green Sandpiper (Tringa ochropus/Witgatje), and flew away. Somewhat later a second Green Sandpiper appeared at the scene. Both birds stayed for more than 2 hours and I watched them washing, doing their feather care, feeding, and resting. Just before taking a bath they performed a very rapid zig-zag flight low over the water. Does anybody know the meaning of this strange behavior?
Green Sandpiper is very much a bird of freshwater, and is often found in sites too restricted for other waders, which tend to like a clear all-round view.

No comments: