There are two subspecies of Willets in North America and during the breeding season in Utah the birds we see are the Western subspecies. When I lived in Florida I would see the Eastern subspecies during the breeding season and the Western subspecies during the winter. Two days ago I was able to photograph willets in several locations on Antelope Island. This one was perched high on a Greasewood and was keeping a watchful eye out because of a Coyote that had passed through the area earlier.
This Willet was being bugged by mosquitoes while I was being bugged too. I don’t recall ever seeing the mosquitoes as thick as they are this year on the island and they sure are annoying to people, beasts and birds. There is a blurry mosquito just in front of this Willet’s neck.
While the Eastern subspecies of Willet are always found in coastal areas both during breeding and nonbreeding season Western Willets are grassland breeders and this time of the year they may have tiny chicks walking in the grasses with them that are well camouflaged by the cryptic patterns of their plumage but the adults usually call loudly if you get near their chicks, this Willet didn’t have any chicks nearby. I have seen chicks already this year but they were hidden in the grasses.
Life is good.