I quickly found the mandarin duck couple at Lake Mirror in downtown Lakeland. I had heard the city had received two mandarin couples for the lake. I only found one of the couples but did not know there were two until later after my visit.
They were napping while I was there but something up in the sky caused them to look up for a few minutes. Hawks and eagles sometimes cruise through there so they might have seen something high up in the sky.
Lake Mirror has a small floating deck in the middle of the lake which is probably used for seasonal decorations. The two fake owls are there to keep the real birds off the deck but you can see how much the real birds pay attention.
I headed over to Lake Morton, a couple of blocks away to see if any of the swans or geese were nesting yet. I found this funny looking mallard. I know he’s saying “Stop staring at my funny feathers on my head.”
There were two swan couples building nests.
The usual “limpkin with a snail” shot.
The black swans were posing for me.
And staying busy preening since mating season was starting.
Snowy egret in the early morning.