Current weather

  • Clear sky
  • 52°
    Clear sky
  • Comment

Rare shorebird spotted near Juneau

Posted: May 13, 2014 - 10:10pm
This May 6, 2014 photo provided by Bob Armstrong shows a long-billed curlew in flight near Juneau, Alaska. North America's largest shorebird had made an appearance in southeast Alaska, hundreds of miles north of its usual northern breeding area. Martina Kallenberger and her husband, Doug Sanvik, spotted and photographed a long-billed curlew May 3 at the Boy Scout camp north of Alaska's capital. They consulted guidebooks for nearly an hour trying to confirm the identity. (AP Photo/Bob Armstrong)  AP
AP
This May 6, 2014 photo provided by Bob Armstrong shows a long-billed curlew in flight near Juneau, Alaska. North America's largest shorebird had made an appearance in southeast Alaska, hundreds of miles north of its usual northern breeding area. Martina Kallenberger and her husband, Doug Sanvik, spotted and photographed a long-billed curlew May 3 at the Boy Scout camp north of Alaska's capital. They consulted guidebooks for nearly an hour trying to confirm the identity. (AP Photo/Bob Armstrong)

JUNEAU (AP) — North America’s largest shorebird made an appearance this month in southeast Alaska, hundreds of miles north of its usual northern breeding area.

Martina Kallenberger and her husband, Doug Sanvik, spotted and photographed a long-billed curlew May 3 at the Boy Scout camp north of Alaska’s capital.

“We were actually watching a flock of Lapland longspurs when we noticed these two shorebirds on a little rise by the stream and one of them was a whimbrel, which we recognized, and the other one was just shockingly different,” Kallenberger told KTOO-radio.

They consulted guidebooks for nearly an hour trying to confirm the bird’s identity.

Long-billed curlews have only been spotted in Alaska three times before and never photographed, said lifelong birder Steve Heinl, part of the University of Alaska Museum’s Alaska Checklist Committee, the arbiter of what’s on Alaska’s official list of documented birds.

Long-billed curlews are 20 to 25 inches long. They’re known for their long, downward-curved bills. Their closest breeding area is southern British Columbia, Audubon Alaska executive director Nels Warnock said. They spend winters in Mexico and the West Coast.

Warnock happened to be in Juneau after the sighting and unsuccessfully tried to spot it. One birder flew up from Washington for the rare opportunity, he said.

“I think it overshot its normal breeding range, which means it migrated too far north,” Heinl said. “Often birds that migrate to the wrong place are younger birds, so it perhaps was on its first northward migration.”

  • Comment

Spotted

Please Note: You may have disabled JavaScript and/or CSS. Although this news content will be accessible, certain functionality is unavailable.

Skip to News

« back

next »

  • title http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321268/ http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321253/ http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321248/
  • title http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321243/ http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321208/ http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/320593/
  • title http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321173/ http://spotted.peninsulaclarion.com/galleries/321163/
My Gallery

CONTACT US

  • 150 Trading Bay Rd, Kenai, AK 99611
  • Switchboard: 907-283-7551
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-283-3584
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-283-3299
  • Business Fax: 907-283-3299
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-335-1257
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING

MORRIS ALASKA NEWS