A winter’s day on the sea shore

Ruddy Turnstones (the ones with the red legs) and Sanderlings* (the white and pale grey ones) having fun on the beach at Marazion.

(click on the photo to enlarge)


The way in which they ran in to the sea as the waves retreated and then ran back again as the waves came in made me smile. Their behaviour was reminiscent of small children chasing the waves.


The Sanderling’s black legs blur as it runs back and forth on the beach, picking or probing for tiny prey in the wet sand left by receding waves.

* I think they are sanderlings, or maybe a semipalmated sandpiper, the trouble is there are several species that look very similar. Maybe Becky can ID them?


  1. Tish Farrell says:

    What a gorgeous post. I want to go play like the sanderlings. I love winter beaches and you have caught the mood so well.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thank you Tish, they are such fun to watch.

  2. Lovely sharp winter light. Have I wished you well for the silly season yet? If not, I hereby do – and fora brilliant 2017.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thank you Meg. Same to you and all your family. Have fun! Such a shame we haven’t been able to meet up whilst you are in Europe, but I am guessing it is too late now. Next time for definite.

      1. It didn’t pan out as I expected. I couldn’t bear being away from the kids for long enough to go far afield, and pre-school dropoff on four days also put a hole in adventures out of Morskie Oko. I doubt I’ll even get to Poznań to see my friend there. Australia begins arriving on January 24, and my granddaughter is talking about staying on and exploring a bit on her own. Next time I’ll plan ahead for it – that’s how I managed 2014.

  3. I’m sure they were fun to watch. It looks cold! 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      Actually it was quite mild, but at this point the sun started to disappear behind cloud on the horizon so we lost the golden light.

  4. Sue says:

    What fun, playtime on a winter beach!

    1. Heyjude says:

      I do like to be beside the sea 😀

  5. beetleypete says:

    I have no idea what the birds are, but it must have been enjoyable to watch their antics.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    1. Heyjude says:

      We only stopped by for a coffee at the hotel which overlooks St Michael’s Mount, one of our favourite spots to sit and enjoy the view. Got distracted by these lovely little sandpipers.

  6. Sue Slaght says:

    Would have loved to have seen the scurrying back and forth Jude. I’m giggling at the thought of it.

  7. Lucid Gypsy says:

    I’ve never heard of sanderlings, sure they’re not dunlin? Great fun anyway!

    1. Heyjude says:

      I’m not sure of anything except they are some kind of sandpiper – there are a lot! Could be a dunlin in winter plumage. Sanderlings are similar but pale grey and white and I think have a shorter bill. I’ll never be a twitcher!!

      1. restlessjo says:

        I twitch all the time but I still can’t identify birds 🙂

        1. Heyjude says:

          You do make me smile 🙂

  8. restlessjo says:

    You made it to the beach! 🙂 🙂 And so did we today. It was fresh but sunny, with an excellent seafood restaurant. Drawing breath before James arrives. No Lisa, sadly, and yes, it was Beamish. Glad you liked it. Hugs, Jude.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I love a seafood restaurant, going to book a table at Rick Stein’s in January for a treat. Next year I am determined that we will get out more for lunch.

      1. restlessjo says:

        Did you see any of his weekend aways? He had me sold on Palermo 🙂

        1. Heyjude says:

          I have always fancied Sicily. I have been there twice but both times only briefly and never to Palermo. I love the Inspector Montalbano series.

  9. BeckyB says:

    How on earth did I miss this beautiful post . . .and you linked to my blog. Most odd 😦

    And yes you are right with your identification – they are definitely Turnstones. And after a chat with my guru (MrB) I am feeling pretty confident that the others are Sanderlings. They are certainly behaving like Sanderlings on a beach 🙂

    1. BeckyB says:

      PS Just seen your comment to Jo about Inspector Montalbano. I also love the series, was one of the very last things that my Dad recommended to me before he lost the power of his speech. We watched a few together and so it brings back really lovely memories.

    2. Heyjude says:

      Thanks Becky, much appreciated. I hope to see more birds this year, I shall make more of an effort to visit the estuary.

      1. BeckyB says:

        Look forward to seeing the outcome of your visits 🙂

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