The Purple Sandpiper is another circumpolar Arctic breeder, but unlike many others in this category, it winters along the North Atlantic coasts, not far to the south in South America.
I associate it with dreary November days on rocky promontories or piers.
Even then it is sufficiently rare in Ontario to be a cause for rejoicing when spotted.
The Purple Sandpiper is a little bigger than a Spotted Sandpiper.
When we see it here in the fall it is mainly dark slate gray (like the rocks on which it is often found), with a white belly and orange to yellow legs.
In the breeding plumage (seldom seen in Ontario) it has a great deal of a scaly brown pattern on its back.
Dr. J. Murray Speirs