Beyond the Backyard

Sandy Point State Reservation, Massachusetts

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Piping Plover

On our way back from Maine, Rich and I stopped at Sandy Point State Park. It’s on the southern end of an island about an hour north of Boston.  My objective was Piping Plovers, who nest in the area.  We have Piping Plovers in Florida during migration, but I haven’t had such good luck finding them.  Well, I found them in Massachusetts!  There were half a dozen of them running around the sandy beach at the very tip of the island. I’m used to Florida beaches, where nesting birds are protected by roped-off areas, often stewarded by local Audubon groups. On this beach in Massachusetts, nesting cages are placed over the Piping Plover nests. The cages were all empty, so I assume that means that the babies had all fledged. I think I spotted a couple of juveniles in fresh plumage, which is lighter than that of the adults. It was a rainy, icky morning. Thunderstorms had moved through the previous night, and everything was all wet. I walked up and down the beach, amazed at how the Massachusetts shoreline was so different than my beaches back home in Florida! Sandy Point State Reservation is an important nesting location not […]