Maine! Hatchlings!

Piping Plover: York County, Maine, USA, July 2024 — This shot was taken with a 600mm equivalent zoom lens from a respectable distance and then cropped to less than a sixth of the frame…down to 2mp from 26mp. Even when they nest on a busy beach, it is important that we give these endangered birds their space. I have been watching this nest for a month now, checking it almost every day, hoping to be on hand for the hatching, or at least soon after. Yesterday the sun did not fight its way free of the cloud cover until afternoon, and the beach was still fogged in when I got there, but I had a look anyway. The Plover was certainly looking unsettled on the nest, and sure enough I caught a chick peaking out from under. I am not certain, but I think it had hatched only moments before I got there, and I am pretty sure the second chick hatched while I watched. She had 4 eggs, so I will have to go back today to see if the other two hatched as well. The chicks were still staying mostly under the cover of the parent, and were not able to fully stand yet, though by now, 16 hours later, they are probably up and running around. I hope so anyway. Sony A6700 with the Tamron 50-400mm Di iii VC zoom at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my evolving bird modifications. Processed in Photomator.

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