As I was driving along route 125, a small bird ran out in front of my car. I could have sworn it was a sandpiper. (semipalmated sandpiper) Which would be really odd, since there are no oceans any where near Lee. I’ve seen the birds many times before, but only on Plumb Island in Newburryport, MA… Could he have been lost? I think it was more likely another bird, but it looked just like this http://www.ups.edu/biology/museum/SESA3.jpg , the only difference being that the bird I saw was slightly lighter colored(more tan feathers) . I don’t know, however, if the pictures I’ve been able to find have been males or females, and if there are color varations between genders or not.
So, any idea what it was that I saw?
Cute leetle fellers, ain’t they? It could very well be a sandpiper. I have seen members of the sandpiper family in some of the most remarkable places. I recall seeing sandpipers in Kansas, and that is rather a far piece from any ocean. In Prudhoe Bay, I routinely see red phalaropes. We also have plovers, gulls, jaegers, loons, swans, ducks of all kinds, geese, snowy owls, and probably other wildfowl that I am forgetting. Here is a very good link to see all these critters. http://www.mbr-pwrc.usgs.gov/Infocenter/infocenter.html#Charadriidae
Could it have been a killdeer?
They are pretty common in open places, even in parking lots.
Saying there are no oceans anywhere near Lee is a little different than saying there are no oceans anywhere near Kansas. You’re not more than 15 miles from Great Bay, and 25 from the Atlantic Ocean.
**Eegba[b/] - that was precisely the point I was trying to make. If I have seen them in Kansas, it would be entirely possible to see them in Lee, NH. Sorry for any confusion I may have caused.
Thanks. If they do stray that far from the ocean (and 20 odd miles does seem far to me, considering how tiny they are) it must be what I saw. Nice to know I’m not crazy. At least about this one thing.
According to this, (http://earthday.wilderness.org/backyard/amazing/semipalmatedsandpiper.pdf), the sandpiper can will migrate up to 9500 miles and can fly up to 50 mph. So hopping over to Lee for the afternoon (even from Plum Island) isn’t that much of a stretch.
But apparently their range isn’t restricted to strictly shoreline (they like stretches of shallow water), so it could easily be a resident of inner NH.
I was just clarifying for those who aren’t familiar with the local geography. Much of New Hampshire is quite mountainous, and it would be strange to find seabirds there, but Lee is quite close to the tiny stretch of NH shoreline.