Despite their diminutive size, sanderlings fly thousands of miles to spend the winter on the Solent coast, all the way from the Siberian Arctic and Greenland.
Individual sanderlings have been known to make annual round trips of nearly 20,000 miles between their breeding and wintering grounds.⠀
Sanderlings are most easily recognised by their behaviour, scampering about on the sand rather than walking and probing in the mud.
They feed in small flocks at the water’s edge, sprinting backwards and forwards after the waves, looking for marine crustaceans, fish and even jellyfish to eat. In the winter, they’re pale grey with a bright white belly and a short straight black bill.⠀