I moved to Doha couples of years back when I was just stepping into the wetlands and lush green forests in India. I found it a task to pull my lens and to begin somewhere. The apartment had its share of trees, blooms and dates, of course. Mornings were melodic as bulbuls chirped each morning, by the windows. I began to walk through parks and gardens which are mostly filled with – bulbuls, sparrows, Laughing Doves and occasional Rose-ringed Parakeets. I happened to meet birders and photographers, who in turn introduced me to farms and shores which are a birding paradise in Qatar.
Wakrah Beach, a serene shore with a patch of mangrove gave a kick-start in the mornings, and became a place that shared my evening cup of tea. My initial few attempts were rather alone with me, lens, shore, and the sky. However, I began to visit and walk around and slowly found magic by the coast! During the winter months, Wakrah is truly a bliss when flocks of wetland parade the coastline. From breakfast time to mid-day, the beach is calm, and there is time in hand to sit by the fine sand and watch the flocks move around, rest and in a jiffy take off and land. There are few moments when the Sun is soft on the land and a mild sparkle shimmers on the low tide. A few loners move away from the crowd and begin to make their curvy trails. Those are shutter times!
Here is a Lesser Sand Plover, a small to medium sized plover which is brown-greyish white in color. The bill is black, and they have brownish eyes with dark stripes near the eyes. They grow anywhere between 18-20 cm in height.
The Lesser Sand Plover, breeds from Siberia to the Himalayas and is also found in China. They have a varied migratory patterns and flock towards South Asia, the Middle East and to the Far East during July to September from the northern hemisphere. They are found on sandy beaches, mud flats, and streams during winters. They typically chase the feed, pause, take small steps and grab their prey that includes crabs, insects, and worms.
- Species Name- Lesser Sand Plover, Charadrius mongolus
- Place of shot – Wakrah Beach, Doha, Qatar
- Season- December 2015