St-Lazare: My little "birding gang" and I were at the St-Lazare sandpit this morning in search of shorebirds, and in particular the Pectoral Sandpipers (Bécasseau à poitrine cendrée) that Mark Dennis had reported earlier this week; it had been some time for all of us since we had last seen that species. We got our Pectoral Sandpipers, among other shorebirds, but we were totally unprepared when Neil Henden suddenly announced, "I've got a Buff-breasted Sandpiper (Bécasseau roussâtre)!" We had no expectation of seeing a Buff-breasted there, and some birders whom we met coming out as we were going in hadn't mentioned it, as they surely would have if they'd seen it. This was a lifer for all of us, and we got some long and truly spectacular looks (and some not very spectacular photos)!
So it was a fantastic morning in St-Lazare, followed up by a good afternoon walk at Île Bizard, where an unusually cooperative Virginia Rail (Râle de Virginie) gave us quite a show. - Zofia Laubitz