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Arctic-nesting shorebird passes by on its way to Argentina

Published 09/12/2012, West Fargo Pioneer

From a still and benign assemblage of cluttered stones, plants, and grass, a pale form moves haltingly. Soon it becomes apparent to the onlooker that this is some sort of animal. Details fill in, a head with a short black beak and black eyes, somewhat longish yellowed legs, it’s an overall tan-colored critter with blacker flecks of feathering along its back. It’s a bird alright, a buff-breasted sandpiper (Tryngites subruficollis) to be specific, but where it was a few moments before its movement gave away its position, is puzzling.

Word count: 656

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