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Two Least Sandpipers Calidris minutilla

Least Sandpiper Calidris minutilla, the smallest shorebird, as seen in a lagoon formed by an earlier high tide on Morro Strand State Beach by the Azure Street entrance, Morro Bay, CA, 30 Oct. 2010, during a stunning golden sunset.

Ref. says “This species has greenish legs and a short thin dark bill. Breeding adults are brown with dark brown streaks on top and white underneath. They have a light line above the eye and a dark crown. In winter, Least Sandpipers are grey above. The juveniles are brightly patterned above with rufous colouration and white mantle stripes. This bird can be difficult to distinguish from other similar tiny shorebirds; these are known collectively as peeps or stints.”

Shot in RAW of course, late light provided the warm image shown here without much specific post-processing using auto white balance default conversion settings. Normal Lightroom cleanup applied, including some noise reduction for the higher ISO images in this series taken later in the evening.

Photo by "Mike" Michael L. Baird, mike [at} mikebaird d o t com,; Canon 1D Mark III, Canon 600mm f/4.0 Lens, with Circular Polarizer to little or negative effect, on a Gitzo GZGT5540LS tripod with Wimberley Gimbal Head II, leveling base, about one foot off the ground. To use this photo, see access, attribution, and commenting recommendations at - Please add comments/notes/tags to add to or correct information, identification, etc. Please, no comments or invites with badges, images, multiple invites, award levels, flashing icons, or award/post rules. Critique invited.


12 May 20-12 Creative Commons use note:


Important Bird Areas "Saving habitat for migratory birds"

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Taken on October 30, 2010