I don’t work on Friday’s and with the warmer weather here this means I am able to get out with my camera on days when most places are much quieter. Today a fellow photographer and myself headed out to the Coast to see the banded dotterels.
Each year these little birds nest on the beach and usually they are within a fenced off area that has been set aside to protect them from being trodden on or run over by vehicles on the beach. This year some of them have nested on the wrong side of the fence.
The chicks I saw were tiny – very tiny! But they moved so fast the best shot I got was from a huge distance. I wasn’t about to go chasing them, that’s unfair to the chick and the frantic parent bird. I was happy to place my chair on the beach and wait for the birds to come to me.
Once the birds realised I wasn’t a threat they did come quite close and I was able to get these images very easily. I didn’t realise quite how close we were to one of the nests until it was pointed out to me. I had never seen banded dotterel eggs before and right in front of me was a nest of three.
We backed off to allow the parent birds to go back to the nest, which they did in short order. I think there will be a couple more trips back out there in the coming weeks to watch the progress of the nest. I know how much distance to give the birds now, and more importantly, I know where not to stand!