I took a quick trip over to Bolivar this morning and saw a few birds.
This was the largest flock of ruddy turnstone I have seen in NZ with some 50 birds, all in splendid breeding plumage. They must have been right on the cusp of commencing their return to the northern hemisphere. This flock was feeding along the high tide mark chasing springtails and other insects among the thrown-up seaweed. In the photos you can see the very large number of insects in the air around the birds which I was unable to identify.
In background behind the greater yellowlegs
Ruddy turnstone hanging out with dotterals and wrybills.
The ruddy turnstone (Arenaria interpres) is a small wading bird, one of two species of turnstone in the genus Arenaria. It is now classified in the sandpiper family Scolopacidae but was formerly sometimes placed in the plover family Charadriidae. It is a highly migratory bird, breeding in northern parts of Eurasia and North America and flying south to winter on coastlines almost worldwide. It is the only species of turnstone in much of its range and...