Redneck: (slang, derogatory) A poor, rural, usually white and male, person from the Southern United States or parts of the Midwest and northeast, especially one who is unsophisticated and backward; sometimes with additional connotations of being rude, racist, and/or arrogant.
Well, I’m not rich; I am a white male; I've worked on a farm or two, although I’m currently a suburbanite; and I’ve often been identified as unsophisticated and backward. Mom was an Okie. I can be rude and arrogant, especially after a few whiskies . . . But, I vehemently deplore racism.
But, that’s not what this Redneck is all about . . .
I drove over to the Coast this morning. I was raised to not call it “going to the Beach”, because, unlike littoral areas elsewhere in the country, the Pacific Northwest has beaches, rocky headlands, estuaries, and tidepools. The “beach” is often pretty boring; around here, the water’s cold enough and the wind’s usually cool enough that you may as well just find something more productive to do than just sit on the sand.
Today, what drew me to the Coast was a search for the bird reported as a Little Stint last weekend, then subsequently confirmed as a Red-Necked Stint after reviews of photos. The bird had been seen as recently as this Tuesday, so there’s a chance that it still might be hanging with the flocks of Western Sandpipers and Sanderlings at Copalis.
As I approached the mouth of Cranberry/Connor creek, I saw people with spotting scopes who turned out to be Andy and Ellen Stepniewski, Brian Pendleton, Marcus Roening, and Heather Ballash.
|This is a Least Sandpiper . . .|
We scoped the shorebird flocks pretty well, but only found the ‘usual’ Western and Least sandpipers and Sanderlings in the ‘peep’ flocks.
|. . . hunting for prey in the beach wrack.|
A “Stint” is any one of the small shorebirds in the genus Calidris, and it takes a bit of patience to work through the flocks to identify the several species - and hopefully find the odd rarity.
The gulls and shorebirds were scattered a time or two when an immature peregrine Falcon tried to find a weak, sick, or unaware prey. The falcon was unsuccessful while we watched several attempts.
Flocks of migrating loons offshore, and of Whimbrels along the beach, treated us with some nice views.
Other than that, it was a pleasant enough day for birding. These gulls enjoyed their Dungeness Crab brunch
We Birders searched for quite a while, but ultimately all “dipped” on the Stint. I returned to the parking lot at Griffiths-Priday State Park, and enjoyed a lunch at the Green Lantern before heading back to Olympia.
Griffiths-Priday State Park eBird Checklist is Here
|The Peregrine Falcon|