A record 103 birds were recorded at a new site in the Rudong mudflats in China [last week]. The estimated total number of spoon-billed sandpipers is thought to be less than 300 adults, meaning the site is depended upon as a stopover for about a third of the world’s population. However, plans to redevelop the site mean it may soon cease to exist, plunging the birds’ future into further danger. Members of the Shanghai Wild Bird Society (SWBS) were responsible for the find and have been financially supported by the East Asian Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP).
Tong Menxui from the SBWS discovered the unusually high numbers over a series of days, peaking at 103 on the 12 October including a count of over 50 birds at a previously unknown site in the vast mudflats. He said: “The sudden cold spell and bad weather might have triggered the birds to stop migrating further so the birds are assembling on Rudong before crossing larger distances. Among the flocks were only two juveniles, which are known to migrate separately and usually later. We intend to continue to monitor the site for more birds passing through over the coming days and weeks.”
To read more, original article can be found here