I think this was a short billed dowitcher. He was digging pretty deep.
I think this is a first winter common tern. He seemed to be the lone common on the beach.
Tricolored heron darting for food.
Crabs heading down to the water.
Fiddler crabs on the beach.
I got to the east beach turnaround at Fort Desoto pretty early in the morning. Only a few fishermen were there. The tide was really low so I walked along the mangroves pretty far past the normal part of the beach. I didn't see the crabs as I walked along the mangroves. When I was walking back to my car I saw this movement in the sand. At first I thought it was a lot of leaves that had blown onto the beach. As I got closer, I realized it was crabs coming from the mangroves. I took some pictures from pretty far away thinking they would scurry back to the mangroves as I got closer to them but they didn't leave. They let me get pretty close. This was the closest I have gotten to these little fiddler crabs. One thing I didn't notice at first is that some of the crabs have the pincher on the left side and some on the right side. So, I looked it up. Only male crabs have the enlarged claw. It can be on either side. Females have two small claws. But, males can lose their enlarged claw for a while when they molt and regrow another one. So just by looking at one with no large claw it could be either a male or female. Unless, you look real close and see the two small claws on the female. Good luck getting that close.