This critically endangered bird is very small and looks like any other small wader from a distance. When it mingles with stints of the same size it's nearly impossible to detect. However, its spatula-shaped bill makes it very special and it appears on many birders' wishlist.
Somebody spotted it and sent the word out. The following day (a Saturday) many birders drove to the mudflats of the Ariake Sea.
The search started on the upcoming tide, which drove the birds close to shore. At the top of the tide, when all the mud was submerged thousands of waders took refuge on the rocks lining the flat. A Peregrine Falcon sent them all flying again few times and when the tide went out all birds returned to the extensive mud.
I was lucky to see it on 3 occasions, thanks to the help of people with digital scopes. Taking photos was extremely hard, because the tiny bird kept on disappearing behind rocks and other bigger birds. It also moved very fast, sending waves of panic and frustration through the group of photographers.