Early Shorebird Migration Monitoring. For six days this week, I set up an AudioMoth microphone and recorder at the edge of Sandyland Ponds in Beaver River. This microphone does not reach as high into the sky as my regular, highly directional microphone for nocturnal migration, the 21c. However, I was running the microphone both during the night and in the early morning to detect the arrival of early migrating shorebirds. Being an omnidirectional microphone, the AudioMoth was a better match for the objective of detecting early shorebird migration in these coastal ponds.
A total of 50 shorebirds were detected during the six days, most of them in the early morning rather than at night. The most abundant, as expected for these early dates, was Short-billed Dowitcher (19 estimated birds). Other shorebirds recorded included Least Sandpiper (11), Whimbrel (8), Greater Yellowlegs (3), Spotted Sandpiper (2), Killdeer (2), Willet (2), Semipalmated Sandpiper (2), and Lesser Yellowlegs (1). A Sora was heard calling on 12 July at 0237 hours.