O for a Little Peace

O for a little peace.


The kind of peace that comes…

When you’ve put into harbor, dropped the anchor.


And just for a little while,

For better or for worse,

The day is done.


Sunset at Stage Harbor, Chatham

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Gulls and Sanderlings – Opportunity and Abundance

When I got to Ridgevale Beach late this afternoon the clouds were AMAZING as I looked out from the channel bridge.


Down along the shore the clouds were even more breathtaking, and the water choppy as a stiff breeze and chill air reminded me that next time I need to wear more layers now that autumn is here in earnest!  😉


Just then I looked toward Cockle Cove Beach, and I noticed an animated bit of activity there among the gulls and sanderlings.


The sanderlings, one of my favorite shorebirds, were trotting along the shore, back and forth, back and forth, even more frenetically than usual.

Yet they weren’t following the waves, as is their usual pattern, but following the gulls, up and down the shoreline.


Yet as busy as they were, one or two of them would now and again turn to look at me; giving me that old familiar sanderling gaze that has endeared them to me ever since I first discovered them many years ago.


Meanwhile, all along the shore the gulls were in the air, scanning the churning chop for scallops, hovering for a time and then plunging down, down into the froth!


More often than not, UP they’d come with tiny scallops in their bills, and carry them to shore.

And of course they would then fight over them, as gulls always do.


It was then that I noticed something…

Each time they’d finish with their squabbling over whose scallop was whose, the gulls would finish their meal quickly and then fly off, screaming at one other, impatient to go find more food to fight over.

And that’s when the sanderlings would scurry in, scooping up the crumbs that were left behind.


So that’s why they were following the gulls around; waiting for their dinner to be brought to shore for them, courtesy of the hungry, noisy, greedy gulls.

And off they’d trot on tiny little legs, with their belly full of scallops!


Such smart little birds, these sanderlings, yesindeedy!

If it is even possible,  I think now I love them even more…   😉

Osprey vs. Gull – Another Round in a Constant Battle

One morning I was photographing terns and Laughing Gulls on the creek side of Red River Beach.

It was one of those quiet mornings, just me and the birds.


When all of a sudden I heard a loud ruckus in the air overhead.

Tipping my camera skyward, I wondered if I could catch a glimpse of what it was.

Aha! A young osprey, his talons clutching a fresh catch, streaked across the sky above me…


With a Black-backed Gull, in hot pursuit!

They made a few passes, screaming challenges back and forth.

Until I heard the fish fall with a great plop! in the grass.

The osprey flew off, all was quiet.

And guess who won?


Proud of his spoils yet aware of other competitors nearby, the gull quickly disposed of it, head first.

With supreme satisfaction.


And so ended another chapter in the eternal battle between these two great Fishing Kings with the Gull, the victor.

This time.   😉

Low Tide Crabbing

The other morning when I arrived at Cockle Cove…


I could tell there wasn’t going to be much swimming happening with the tide so low.


But that sure didn’t stop these gulls from their longstanding fight over crabs.

In fact the shallow water made it even easier to keep a hold of the wriggling crabs.


I guess gulls WILL be gulls.  😉

Welcome Morning… at Ridgevale Beach

I love mornings at Ridgevale Beach.

For the light.

For the birds I find there.


This time of year, I’ll see great egrets and snowies…


Terns and laughing gulls, piping plovers.

Some flying low over the tidal flats…


Others feeding in the shallows.


Crouched down with camera in hand, this is pretty much my idea of “heaven”.

Complete with twinkling stars on shimmering blue.


😉