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Yesterday I went with a friend back to Fortescue, NJ to see Red Knots and other shore birds feasting on the eggs that Horseshoe Crabs come ashore to lay in late May of each year. There seemed to be many more birds, and millions of mosquitoes, this time.

Horseshoe Crabs, Red Knots, with orange breast, and Semipalmated Sandpiper at Fortescue, NJ.

Horseshoe Crabs, Red Knots, with orange breast, Semipalmated Sandpiper, and Ruddy Turnstones in the background. 

Horseshoe Crabs, Ruddy Turnstones, Semipalmated Sanpiper, Red Knots.

Horseshoe Crabs, Ruddy Turnstones, Semipalmated Sanpiper, Red Knots. Three male crabs were converging on one female. The males are usually smaller than the female crabs.

The following photo could be used as a wallpaper pattern.

Shore birds walking on the beach at Fortescue, NJ.

Shore birds walking on the beach at Fortescue, NJ.

There was a group that was capturing Semipalmated Sandpiper with nets to later band them for help in studying their population and migration patterns. There are claims that Semipalmated Sandpipers are in decline and their population should be “of concern.” These birds, like the Red Knots, can fly nonstop 2,000 miles from South America to New Jersey where they rest and replenish their energy with the help of crab eggs.

Captured Semipalmated Sandpiper.

Captured Semipalmated Sandpiper being transferred from one container to another.

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