Since it was an early tide last Wednesday, I had lots of time to bird other than just Bottle Beach. Despite considerable walking, though, I didn’t end up seeing very much. I even went to Tokeland twice because someone said there were curlews to be seen. By the time I got back, the gulls seemed to have displaced them.
So I was especially pleased when i say a pair of Red-Necked Phalaropes, though not in breeding colors, at Midway Beach. They weren’t shy and the bright sun insured that I got some of the best shots I’ve ever gotten of them.
When I first got there, the pair were swimming rapidly, apparently hunting insects. This is the way I’ve always seen them before.
I was pleasantly surprised when they started wading through the reeds, something I’d not seen before.
As a photographer, I’m as interested in the setting as I am in the subject itself and I thought the reeds provided and interesting background, nearly as interesting as the reflections in this shot:
In fact, I suspect that with a background like that I might even be tempted to go all Photoshopy and make the background as important as the Phalarope itself,
which it is, of course, because habitat is increasingly critical for all wildlife.