You’ve had your turn


I was watching two Spotted Sandpipers. Each seemed to be taking a considerable interest in the other. Then…,

The female crouched, lifted her tail, the male landed upon her, wrapped his tail beneath hers, and they mated.

After a brief disengagement, they mated again.

Abruptly, she lurched forward; he fell off her back. She dropped her tail and lifted her wings to prevent his return.

It might be imagined that she was rebuffing an oppressor. Yet, I suspect the truth is rather different. The female Spotted Sandpiper is polyandrous—she mates with many males. She willingly mated with this one. Her subsequent rejection is likely her way of saying: “I now move on to my next lover; You’ve had your turn.”

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1 Response to You’ve had your turn

  1. Christine says:

    Beautiful rare shots, nice capture.

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