Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2021-47

Common name:

Upland Sandpiper

Scientific name: Bartramia longicauda
Date: 9/3/2021
Time: 8:40am
Length of time observed: 2 minutes
Number: 1
Age: ?
Sex: ?
Location: Jordan River Parkway, about 3600 South in South Salt Lake City
County: Salt Lake
Latilong: 40.693305, -111.921699
Elevation: 4300ft
Distance to bird: 200ft at closest
Optical equipment: Nikon 10x42 Binoculras
Weather: Sunny, clear and calm
Light Conditions: Excellent, low angle of morning light had bird fully illuminated
Description:        Size of bird: Medium sized shorebird
(Description:)       Basic Shape: streamlined
(Description:)  Overall Pattern: brownish with pale belly
(Description:)            Bill Type: shortish and straight
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
Visual and audible, flying directly overhead calling about 200ft up. Medium sized shorebird, brownish wings, head, neck and upper breast with a contrasting pale belly, shortish straight bill, long neck, no wingbars, all brown tail. Distinctive audible calls, pdubup. As we were watching a Kestrel being divebombed by a Hummingbird (with binoculars), I caught movement of a shorebird flying from the SE, at 1st I thought Killdeer as we had just had one fly over, but did not note wingbars and neck seemed to long, it turned and came straight at us, as it got overhead I could see the straight shortish bill and was thinking Yellowlegs, until it did its unique flight call 3 times as it was right above me. Having heard them in Texas I knew exactly what it was. By the time I realized what I was looking at, it was getting past me and I couldn't get my camera on it in time. Disappeared behind trees heading ENE. After it disappeared I pulled up the Sibley app and played the "Flush call" to demonstrate to Mitchell why I thought it was an Upland Sandpiper, which was a perfect match for what we had just heard and he agreed with the ID
Song or call & method of delivery: This was the main point of ID, a unique quivering, rabid Pdubup made 3 times as it flew directly overhead. I became familiar with this call on my trip to Texas in 2018, whenever we would find them in the ag fields, when they flushed they would make this distinctive call as they flew off. Also one night on Mustang island I when outside to look at the stars before bed and could hear this call being made overhead, presumably by nocturnal migrants, that experience cemented the call in my brain. I would describe it more as a flight call then a "flush call" as they seem to do it habitually in flight?
Behavior: Spotted in flight to the southwest, then flew directly overhead heading east-northeast, calling as it flew
Habitat: Riparian corridor in an otherwise developed mix of residential and industrial areas
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Most large shorebirds eliminated by having longer bills and legs, such as Curlews, Whimbrels, Godwits, Avocets and Stilts.

Most smaller shorebirds such as peeps, Phalarope and most Plovers have wingbars and a more compact build.

Golden-Plovers have shorter necks and bills without pale bellies

Dowitchers and Snipe similar in size but much longer bills

Stilt Sandpiper have longer bills as well

Ruff has wingbars and a white underwing

Buff-breasted has an entirely buffy belly and white underwing

Pectoral is shorter necked and more compact with different buzzy calls

Tringas are most similar in size and structure
Willets have bold black and white wings
Tattlers are darker gray and have a longer bill
Yellowlegs(both) have longer legs and different calls
Solitary Sandpiper has white outer tail feathers

No other shorebird makes the same distinctive call
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
Yes, I saw many in Texas in 2018, including hearing nocturnal flight calls of migrants overhead
References consulted: Memory, Sibley "birds of North America' app
Description from: Notes taken at the time of the sighting
Observer: Bryant Olsen
Observer's address: 84102
Observer's e-mail address: **
Other observers who independently identified this bird: Mitchell Dart was with me
Date prepared: 9/3/21
Additional material:  
Additional comments: eBird checklist: