Bird #311 — Willet

catoptrophorus (from katoptron, mirror, and phoros, bearing) semipalmatus (half-webbed)

Sunday, April 28, 1984 — 10:10 am

Waukegan, Illinois — Waukegan Beach — Lake Michigan

I spotted these Willets at the north end of the beach. They were standing on the sand at the water’s edge, looking about.  When one of the Ring-billed Gulls walked or landed within a foot, the Willets would walk down the beach a few steps and stand still again.  They allowed me to approach within 20 feet, then took off over the lake, headed north a ways, and landed in two inches of water near a large mixed flock of gulls and terns.

When they took off, they gave a loud “per-will-willet” call.  The long, white wing stripe flashed boldly in flight.

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