868. Shorebirds

There are more shorebirds here on Asilomar’s beaches than we can tell you about on this tour. If you don’t already have one, you might want to grab yourself a bird book for your next visit. Here are just a few birds you may be able to spot: Those bands of little birds that run along playing tag with the sea foam are sandpipers or sanderlings. They feed at the water’s edge, where they probe into the wet sand for food. Oyster catchers are easy to spot around the coastal rocks, with their bright orange beaks. Offshore you can often see dark colored cormorants swimming or flying. You can identify them by their long necks, which they extend straight out in front as they fly along in pairs or small flocks. Of course, among the most visible birds on California’s coastline are the many species of gull. Watch for the common Heerman’s, Western, or California gulls. Each species may have distinct differences depending on their age or the time of year. Can you see any differences?