A Ruddy Turnstone enjoys a clam dinner on the beach at Fort DeSoto State Park:
The mass of beach detritus (in the picture below) was jumping around as if there were an earthquake under it. It took a few minutes before I saw the birds that were making it move. Three or four Turnstones had dug under the sticks and were tossing the material up and down as they burrowed under it for more to eat.
From Audubon Society Field Guide. Eastern Region: Turnstones are named from their method of feeding, in which they walk along the beach, deftly roling small stones and pebbles and seizing the animals hiding underneath. They also dig holes in the sand, often larger than themselves, in pursuit of burrowing crustaceans.
It was shells and twigs that they were turning over here, but whatever they're working on, the beach is a real buffet for these little guys. (They're about 8 inches long.)
Looks like he's had enough to eat for now!
This post is linked to WILD BIRD WEDNESDAY. Thank you Stuart. And if you haven't already seen yesterday's post on our eagle neighbors, you may want to scroll back to it. (It isn't often that I have enough birding experiences to post twice in one week and I'm excited about it!)