ON September 19th last I had the opportunity, through the kindness of Mr. Bristow, of examining a small wader which he had just received for preservation. He at first thought it was a Little Stint, but on taking it up to skin he noticed the webbing at the base of the toes and, as soon as he had finished stuffing it, he brought it up to me to identify. Having compared it with skins of the Little, Temminck’s, and American Stints, and with descriptions, we made out that it was, without doubt, a specimen of the American Semi-palmated Sandpiper (Ereunetes pusiUus). I t was an immature bird in autumn plumage, and had been shot two days previously by a shore-shooter at Jury Gap in Romney Marsh, not far from the Sussex and Kent boundary. Of the three Stints mentioned above, the present specimen is most like the Little Stint (Tringa minuta) in a similar stage of plumage, but is paler on the back, and the edges of the long scapular feathers are of a paler sandywhite. I t is also more easily distinguished from any of them by its comparatively larger and stouter bill and the characteristic webbing between the bases of the three anterior toes. I n Eastern North America this is a widely distributed species in the summer, migrating south in the autumn through the West Indian Islands to the coasts of South America. So far as I have been able to ascertain this is the first occurrence
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British Birds – how it works
BB 2000 Ltd, the company that owns and publishes British Birds, is run by a board of directors, all of whom are volunteers. The company employs two full time staff – Roger Riddington is the journal’s editor while Hazel Jenner manages subscriptions and administration – and three part-time design/editorial staff.
The company is wholly owned by The British Birds Charitable Trust (BBCT, registered charity no. 1089422). Neither the company directors nor the trustees are paid for their services, providing their time and enthusiasm because they passionately believe in the value of BB. The Company is managed with a view to making a small profit which can be donated to the Trust to help fund its charitable work.
Over the past six years, this, combined with donations from other sources, has enabled the Trust to give almost £40,000 support to a variety of conservation and educational projects ranging from rat eradication on seabird islands to the study of cuckoo migration, as well as assisting young birders develop their interest.
A full list of projects is given here. The Trust is seeking to expand its charitable endeavours and would welcome donations from like-minded organisations and individuals.