3 Sanderling juves 10/8/18

Juvenile Sanderlings are the most black and white of the little sandpipers you see along the coast during late migration. They are coming from the Arctic, and it’s impossible to know if this bunch will continue on to South America or spend the winter right here on the beaches of Maine. Sanderlings are the next size up from the “peeps” or the 5 smallest shorebird species, and are similarly sized with Dunlin and Purple Sandpipers—our 2 other winter shorebirds. In another month or so these birds will molt from juvenile into their first winter plumage. Gone will be the spangled wings and streaky heads, replaced with a soft pale gray.

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