Aren’t They Abundant Yet?

I have fond memories of climbing up and down sand dunes as a kid. At the time, they felt like mini-mountains to me, offering spectacular views of the ocean, but even more fun when you were in the middle of the dunes and surrounded by sand in every direction with no way of telling which way the ocean was. It’s what I thought a desert would be like. We’d leap from the tops and land in the sand then tumble down  – our own version of summer sledding.

Minus the sled.

But then came those piping plovers. Or, more accurately, there went the piping plovers. Apparently, our childlike behavior was disturbing these tiny birds’ nesting habitat and they were bordering extinction or something. Then it seemed every beach in Massachusetts blocked off the sand dunes and made them forbidden territory.

Twenty-five or so years later, that’s still the case. Yet every time I go to the beach I see gazillions (yes, that’s a scientific quantity) of those damn piping plovers. They’re out there mocking me…non-verbally telling me that I can’t go for a walk in the dunes, or re-live childhood memories of climbing and jumping.

Are they seriously still near extinction? I mean, seriously, it’s been a quarter century and I really do see a lot of them every time I go to the beach. Hasn’t the population bounced back yet?

I suppose you can tell where I’m going with this: Randy and I went to the beach this weekend. We tried going to Crane Beach, but the parking lot was full. We instead kept going up Route 1A and ended up on Plum Island. The beach wasn’t as nice (the dip into the water was steeeeeeeeeeeeep). But it was a nice day overall. As we were leaving some guy fishing said that there had been a shark sighting. I’m not sure I believe him, but it’s a fun story.

2 Comments

  1. Comment by Randy on August 31, 2010 4:24 pm

    well based on how much trash was at the beach thrown into the dunes in newburyport, i think the piping plovers have something to still be worried about! he he

  2. Comment by Randy on August 31, 2010 4:24 pm

    well based on how much trash was at the beach thrown into the dunes in newburyport, i think the piping plovers have something to still be worried about! he he

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