A huge highlight of joining shorebird research in the Yellow Sea, especially in Korea, is having decent chances to see the critically endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper. Although we might have a project focused on other species, it’s very important for us to always keep detailed records, get images, and make videos of any Spoon-billed Sandpipers observed. In July, while researching Far Eastern Curlew at the Geum, I observed one adult Spoonie, which was very exciting. It was during a high tide roost count and the bird appeared to be an adult in post-breeding plumage. And then in August, I observed several different birds, including one individual that had been banded in Korea (white engraved A5 over orange). It’d be really useful to get information about that particular bird, so I’ve been trying to get in touch with banders at NIBR (See EDIT at end of post). I’ve uploaded all of these observations to my YouTube channel, so you can watch them there if you’d like.
Here’s a video of the banded Spoonie, trying its best to avoid a young but very persistent and seemingly hungry Peregrine Falcon. Luckily, the falcon wasn’t successful this time around.
It’s often easier to find Spoonies when picking through birds at a high tide roost, but sometimes we’re able to observe on tidal flats, and we’re getting a better understanding of where its most likely to find them away from high tide. Above is a video of a bird observed feeding in some of its better habitat at the site. Hope you enjoy.
Leave a comment and let us know what you think. And happy birding.
We received a message from Spike Millington, Secretariat of the EAAFP, about the Korean flagged Spoon-billed Sandpiper: “SBS A5 was banded at Yubu-do on 1 October 2016, the same day as A9, recently sighted at Rudong.” Thank you!
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