Discovering the Upland Sandpiper

While driving along the auto tour road at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma, I was looking for a wildlife photography opportunity that would capture my attention. Suddenly, a bird caught my eye as it was walking in a nearby field. At first glance, I mistook it for a Mourning Dove, but as I approached closer, I realized it was not what I initially thought.

Thanks to the help of my dear friend Mia McPherson, who is also an avid bird photographer, I learned that this bird was actually an Upland Sandpiper. With its strikingly unique features, the Upland Sandpiper is a bird that is hard to miss. Known for its long neck, small head, and an overall slender physique, it’s no surprise that it’s not easily mistaken for other birds.

Upland Sandpiper

Upland Sandpiper

Upland Sandpiper Walking Toward Me

Upland Sandpiper Walking Toward Me

I quickly pulled over to the side of the road in my pickup truck and started to capture photos of this magnificent bird. Being able to photograph the Upland Sandpiper was a momentous occasion for me as it was the first time I had ever come across it.

What makes the Upland Sandpiper stand out even more is that it’s one of the few shorebird species that prefer to breed and nest in open grasslands, as opposed to marshes or wetlands. This makes it an essential bird to look out for, especially for wildlife enthusiasts and bird photographers who are exploring open areas with tall grass or prairies.

Overall, the experience of photographing an Upland Sandpiper was a perfect way to end my day at the refuge. It’s always a thrill to come across a new and exciting species, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to have captured it on camera.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS R7
  • Lens: Canon RF 800mm F11 IS STM


First Photo Only

  • Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
  • Date and Time Taken: April 18, 2023 (09:26 A. M.)
  • Exposure Mode: Manual
  • Aperture: f11
  • Shutter speed: 1/2000
  • ISO: 1250 (Auto)
  • Exposure Compensation:  0
  • Focal Length: 800 mm

Related Posts:

Willet At Antelope Island State Park

By |2023-04-20T04:35:58-05:00April 21, 2023|Categories: Birds|Tags: , , |

About the Author:

I’m Steve Creek, an Arkansas-based wildlife photographer known for my extraordinary ability to capture the essence of the natural world. My keen eye for detail and composition results in stunning images of birds, deer, foxes, raccoons, and more. What sets me apart is my commitment to storytelling through my photos, revealing the behavior and environment of these creatures. I’m also a dedicated advocate for wildlife conservation, using my images to inspire others to protect our precious natural resources. As a blogger, I love sharing valuable tips for aspiring wildlife photographers.

One Comment

  1. Mia April 22, 2023 at 5:59 am

    Steve, I just love these images. Congrats on the lifer bird!

Comments are closed.