It was a beautiful morning when I got to Fort Desoto Park in early April. I stopped by the East Beach turnaround to get a shot of the sun coming up over the bay. I had high hopes for seeing some migrating birds that has stopped by but it was still a little too early for spring migration. Last April we had a really slow migration with hardly any birds stopping by so I’m hoping we don’t have a repeat.
A pileated woodpecker was the first bird I saw, high up in a tree.
A hooded warbler and a black and white warbler with a snack. Normally I would be excited but I had just seen both of these in my backyard.
There were at least 3 prothonotary warblers in a big bush in front of the water fountain being very cooperative. It was the only other migrating bird we saw that morning. There were a lot of people out looking. Again, it was still early in the month.
An opsrey was eating a fish in the tree behind the prothonotary warbler. I had to take a shot before heading to the gulf fishing pier for a quick walk before heading home.
I got to the fishing pier and saw the reddish egret that has the white wings fly by.
There were a lot of birds at the little beach next to the fishing pier. The usual gulls, terns and oystercatchers. But there was something else that looked different.
A rare kittiwake was sitting there with the other birds. After a while I realized a ton of people were at the pier taking pictures of him as well. This is only my 2nd kittiwake sighting. Back in 2013 I was able to see the immature one at the Sunshine Skyway Bridge fishing pier. I had heard there was one seen in 2017 and this was the 3rd sighting recorded in Pinellas county ever. People were phoning and texting friends and by noon a big crowd had formed. Everyone gave him space and stayed off the beach area. They even stopped tourists from walking through the area. Twice he took off and flew down the pier and came back on the beach.
Laughing gulls were fighting over stolen bait fish (the one on the left has one in his beak).
A boat cruises by the lighthouse on Egmont Key.