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Sandpipers

Group: 
Birds

Sandpipers are more delicate and graceful than plovers and have much longer bills as they feed deeper in the mud.

The information about this group of species has been organised into reports, charts, maps and photos. Click a pic below to see the detail:

Dunlin

Calidris alpina
Click species photo for details of this species:

Found in large flocks on muddy shorelines in winter.


 

Knot

Calidris canutus
Click species photo for details of this species:

Usually seen during migation times bit also over winter in very small numbers in Dorset


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Ballam

Little Stint

Calidris minuta
Click species photo for details of this species:

A migratory species that breeds in the Arctic and passes through Dorset in spring and summer.


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Ballam

Curlew Sandpiper

Calidris ferruginea
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An occasional winter visitor, usually whilst on migrartion in autumn


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Andrews

Sanderling

Calidris alba
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Generally a passage migrant but sometmes over winters here in Dorset


 

 

Purple Sandpiper

Calidris maritima
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An occasional winter vistor to rocky shores in Dorset.


 

Jack Snipe

Lymnocryptes minimus
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Uncommon but could potential turn up on any Dorset wetland area in winter


 

 

Photo by:
Internet Open Source

Snipe

Gallinago gallinago
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A common but often overlooked winter visitor that may still nest in Dorset in damp places


 

 

Woodcock

Scolopax rusticola
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Quite a rare breeding species in Dorset and seen more often as a visitor in hard winters.


 

 

Photo by:
Internet Open Source

Turnstone

Arenaria interpres
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A frequent species on stoney shores and around seaweed.


 

Black-tailed Godwit

Limosa limosa
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Can be seen all year round but is more common in winter.


 

Bar-tailed Godwit

Limosa lapponica
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Over winter every year in Poole Harbour but in far fewer numbers than black-taled godwits


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Ballam

Whimbrel

Numenius phaeopus
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An occasional visitor seen primarily during migration in spring and autumn but it also over winters in Dorset


 

Curlew

Numenius arquata
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A fairly common wader around muddy shorelines.


 

Spotted Redshank

Tringa erythropus
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Small numbers visit Poole Harbour and Christchurch Harbour each winter.


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Ballam

Redshank

Tringa totanus
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Found around muddy shorelines all year but more common in winter.


 

Greenshank

Tringa nebularia
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A winter visitor to Poole and Christchurch harbours.


 

Green Sandpiper

Tringa ochropus
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An autumn passage migrant and occasional winter visitor


 

 

Wood Sandpiper

Tringa g;areola
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Seen only occasionally on migration in Dorset


 

 

Photo by:
Ian Ballam

Common Sandpiper

Actitis hypoleucos
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A passage migrant mainly in the autumn


 

These much rarer species have also been recorded in Dorset:

Click/tap the species common name if you want to see more information.

Species Common Name Scientific Name Status
Spotted Sandpiper Actitis macularius

A north American species of wader found near fresh water pools. It migrated to south America in winter and is rarely seen in Europe.


 

 

Bairds Sandpiper Calidris bairdii

Migrant species between the Arctic tundra and South America and extremely uncommon in Britain


 

 

Stilt Sandpiper Calidris himantopus

A long distance migrant from the north American tundra that heads to Japan and Australia in winter so not common in Dorset!


 

 

Least Sandpiper Calidris minutilla

Nesting in the north American arctic tundra they over winter in central and southern America and are very rare vagrants in Dorset


 

 

Buff-breasted Sandpiper Calidris subruficollis

Breeds in the Arctic tundra of North America but known as a long distant migrant and does rarely occur in Dorset


 

 

Long-billed Dowitcher Limnodromus scolopaceus

A rare winter vagrant from America


 

Lesser Yellow Legs Tringa flavipes

A north American wader that can arrive in Dorset if it goes astray on migration