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Banded Birds Sighted as Fall Migration Kicks Off on Islands

October 1, 2020

SCCF Shorebird Biologist Audrey Albrecht continues to do monthly shorebird surveys and is catching up on data entry and analysis following the completion of the shorebird nesting season.

Out on the beaches, volunteers and Albrecht have seen a few interesting banded birds recently.

Volunteer Cheri Hollis found this sandwich tern (Thalasseus sandvicensis) at Bowman’s Beach on Sept. 23. It was originally captured and banded as a breeding adult on Raccoon Island, Louisiana, in 2015. The only other time it has been re-sighted since banding was in October 2015 by a colleague from Audubon Florida on Marco Island.

Albrecht found this banded red knot (Calidris canutus) on Sept. 25 at Bowman’s while on turtle patrol. This individual was banded (6C9) as an adult in October 2011 in South Carolina.

“Red knots are on their southern migration right now. They nest in arctic Canada, and fly south in the fall.” said Albrecht. “Looking at its past re-sights, it appears this individual may stay in Florida for the winter. But, others will just stop here and then continue on to South America. They will start heading north again in April.”

Red knots can migrate up to 18,000 miles a year traveling between wintering grounds in Argentina and the breeding grounds on the Arctic tundra.

Please email Audrey at with any questions about shorebirds or to report sightings of banded birds.


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