Resting Ruddy Turnstone male

Resting Ruddy Turnstone maleResting Ruddy Turnstone male – Nikon D200, handheld, f8, 1/250, ISO 200, Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm, natural light

When I photographed this resting Ruddy Turnstone male on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico in 2009 I knew it wouldn’t be long before he migrated to a rocky arctic coast to breed. His plumage was much brighter than the birds that had over wintered along the gulf coast. Turnstones get their name because they turn things over with their bills looking for prey including the stones found on their breeding grounds. We have two species of Turnstones in North America, the American and the Black. I have yet to see and photograph Black Turnstones and I sincerely hope that one day I will have that opportunity.

I do see Ruddy Turnstones here in Utah during their migration but I have never been able to get as close to them as I did when I lived in Florida. There were times in Florida that if I laid very still for a long period of time that the turnstones would come so close to me that I could not focus on them with my gear.

I might have to get some camo gear and sit on the shoreline of the Great Salt Lake to get close to the Ruddy Turnstones here.

Life is good.



  1. Patty Chadwick March 11, 2015 at 5:55 pm

    I like your photo of that colorful little guy almost as much as I like saying “Resting Ruddy Turnstone”…
    I “got skunked” once several years ago, when returning home in dusky light, I pushed our black cat away from the door with my foot to keep her from entering, but it wasn’t our cat! I was wearing new shoes and a new raincoat. They didn’t survive. At the time, I was working for a neurophsychologist adminstering cognitive testing. It took several days for the smell to wear off of me…in the meantime, it was quite distracting to the patients during the three hour testing sessions!!!

  2. Elephant's Child March 11, 2015 at 11:37 am

    You got skunked? I assume you mean that literally rather than metaphorically. Eeeuw. And I am very sorry.

    Love the turnstone. Some bird names are perfect and others fall firmly into the ‘what were they thinking’ category.

  3. Bob Bushell March 11, 2015 at 4:47 am

    Superb Turnstone photo, thanks Mia.

Comments are closed.