26 October 2007

An Azores first!

Bump, the 1960s vintage military transport plane arrived in Terceira. Two hours of daylight remained and, thanks to the most efficient baggage retrieval, airport evacuation and taxi hijacking yet performed, we (myself, Vincent and David) spent over an hour of it at the mighty Cabo da Praia. Whilst the paparazzi chased the Laughing Gull, I scanned the waders and soon stumbled onto a small, dull-axilleried, short-winged pluvialis. Having fought off the initial disbelief, I cautiously uttered "I think I might have a Pacific here". All three of us then grilled the bird and slowly (oh, so slowly) became more and more confident as the gloom became more and more impenetrable. I also took this opportunity to obtain some of the worst photos and video of any bird ever (some of which I present here, see/squint below).

If you listen very, very carefully the bird calls right at the end of the clip, seemingly in response to a Semi-palmated Plover, it appears to utter a very similar 'chew-it'.

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