As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Monday, 7 July 2014

Arthur blows rare bird into southern Nova Scotia

Walking along the side of a windswept sand dune at Mavillette Beach on Saturday morning, apparently dazed and confused, was a rare bird.

The dominant feature of this black and white visitor was a slender, two-tone red and black needle-sharp bill some 10 centimetres in length.

He didn't want to fly until someone came a little too close and forced him to lift off and circle around, only to land a few metres away.

Most agree the bird is a black skimmer, likely exhausted after being blown to Digby County from Florida or the Carolinas, where the birds would be breeding just about now.

The bottom of a black skimmer's beak is longer than the top, says the All About Birds website. The bird will skim low over the water with its beak open, hoping to trap small fish, according to the site, operated by Cornell University.

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