Back on April 21, 2023, I made a blog post and shared some images of an Upland Sandpiper I photographed for the first time at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma [Discovering the Upland Sandpiper]. I was thrilled to capture this long-billed, long-legged shorebird strutting across the grasslands.

Just a few days ago, I had another encounter with the Upland Sandpiper. While driving the auto tour road at Sequoyah, I spotted one foraging near the side of the road. I quickly pulled over and was able to photograph the bird from inside my truck as it poked around in the grass. Although it stayed mostly hidden, I managed to fire off a couple of clear shots as it briefly popped its head up.

Upland Sandpiper Standing In Grass

Upland Sandpiper Standing In Grass

Getting the chance to photograph this nomadic species again so soon was an unexpected bonus! The Upland Sandpiper has one of the longest migrations of any shorebird, traveling all the way from southern South America to their breeding grounds across the Great Plains. So I feel fortunate to have crossed paths with them twice now during their stopovers in Oklahoma. It just goes to show that you never know what you’ll spot when exploring wildlife refuges.

An Upland Sandpiper Sighting at Dawn

An Upland Sandpiper Sighting at Dawn

Let me know in the comments if you’ve had the chance to observe any upland sandpipers before. Wishing you all great birding adventures ahead!

Steve Creek, Wildlife Photographer

Image Information:

  • Date: 9/17/23
  • Time: 7:42 AM
  • Camera: Canon EOS R5
  • Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM
  • ISO: 4000
  • Aperture: 8
  • Shutter: 1/800
  • Exp. Comp.: +0.7
  • Program: Manual


1. Where can I find Upland Sandpipers?

Upland Sandpipers can be spotted during their migratory stopovers in North America, particularly in open grasslands and prairies.

2. Are Upland Sandpipers endangered?

Upland Sandpipers are considered a near-threatened species due to habitat loss and degradation. Conservation efforts are in place to protect their habitats.

3. What is the best time of year to photograph Upland Sandpipers?

The best time to photograph Upland Sandpipers in North America is during their migratory stopovers in spring and fall when they pass through on their way to breeding or wintering grounds.