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Concentrated group of shorebirds this am in North Mississippi.   Assumed they were all Semipalmated SP's.  Looking at photos, not sure.   Thanks.

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Most of the birds look like Semipalmated. The strongly rufous colors bird on the left appears to be a western with a bill on the shorter end of the spectrum. Also the bird on the right of the last picture looks good for Western

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Posted (edited)

I see Westerns all the time here in Phoenix, and none of these birds are Westerns. The bird on the left in the first two pictures is a textbook breeding Semipalmated- slight reddish on the face, short bill, no streaking on the belly, beige overall, and no rufous on scaps.

In the last photo, the bird on the right lacks bright rufous scaps, has a short bill without a slightly bulging tip, and has an unstreaked belly. There's also a difference in shape/structure- Semipalmated Sandpipers have a cuter more 'potbellied' appearance, which is evident here, while Westerns have a front-heavy look to them.

Also worth noting Westerns are far less common out east- I think I only had a couple of them back in Illinois before I moved to AZ

Edited by Benjamin
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