Sunday, 1 December 2019

Shelter for Turnstones

When I was on holiday recently I spent the day on a little beach near the village of El Cotillo, on the island of Fuerteventura, Canary Islands.

Fuerteventura is renowned for its strong winds, though in my experience this can range from a gentle breeze to very strong, including what amounts to sand-storms on some of the island's beautiful beaches.

Many regular visitors to these beaches bring wind shelters with them.

I have one now myself, called the Quechua Arpenez 0.

This small wind-breaker measures almost three and a half feet in height, weighs two and a quarter pounds (about one kilogram in continental weight).

The bag containing it measures fifteen inches by three and a half inches (38cm x 9cm).

If you're taking hand luggage with you on the flight this bag shall fit easily into your baggage.

DAILY avian visitors to Cotillo Beach are the most captivating little birds, Turnstones, which forage along the beach and rocks for food.

Sometimes they are heard before they are seen because their call is quite distinctive.

I had some bread with me, which they seemed to appreciate, though apparently their preferred foods are insects and molluscs.

I have never seen turnstones literally turning stones over with their beaks in search of food.

Are there any in Northern Ireland?

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