There are 18 types of sandpipers that scamper along the coasts of North America, 15 of which vacation in Maine. Some have impressive names, such as the Greater Yellowlegs, Semipalmated, Ruddy Turnstone, Buff-Breasted, and Solitary Sandpipers. But, that’s not so for the hard-working piper in the image below.
She and her mate, unfortunately, were baptized as Least Sandpipers by the ornithological priests. Yes, she and her type are the smallest shorebirds in the world at six inches in length. But, why identify them by the disparaging adjective Least when Diminutive would be more accurate? How would you like to be classified as among the Least Human? (Brooklin, Maine)