Different things at Gatorland

Many of the birds were still sitting on eggs at the bird rookery at Gatorland in Orlando in mid-May.

Some were still flirting.

Lots of different wild birds hanging out at the park including the great egret above that stole a hot dog from an alligator. You can feed the alligators here but half of the time the birds get the food quicker.

Pretty peacock.

The youngest baby birds at the rookery that morning. The baby snowy egrets were probably only a few days old.

The gators were getting frisky.

Seeing a baby gator up close.

This guy was taking a break before the crowds were on the boardwalk.

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Going crazy for breakfast.

These 2 almost fully grown snowy egrets were going crazy when Mom showed up with breakfast. She sat there for a few minutes before feeding them and they kept trying to climb over to her.

Eventually she was ready to pass the fish over to them. Mom brings the food in her mouth and then passes it over. I’m surprised eyes don’t get poked out.

The sibling was screaming for food next so off she went to get another fish. At this point the babies are big enough to leave alone. They don’t really stay on the tiny nest but hang out in the branches close by. These guys were probably flying pretty soon after I took these at Gatorland,

Almost alone at Fort Desoto

This was a morning in early May when a nasty storm was suppose to already be here. I got to Fort Desoto hoping to get some storm shots and it was sunny and hot. It was also a rare Friday that I had off so hardly anyone here yet.

Only me and my shadow at the fishing pier.

I walked the swampy trails and only found a young armadillo. All above were taken with  my phone including the one of the armadillo. He walked pretty close to my feet but I didn’t let him get that close.

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Baby swans on a hot spring morning.

A female wood duck up above and her 4 juvenile babies hanging out on a rock.

It’s always fun to see the baby swans.

Across the street from the lake, in front of the library in Lakeland, there were still 2 swans sitting on nests. At least they had a good shady spot away from the crowds and a nice view of the lake.

Two butterflies together on the street. Where they mating? I’ve never seen this before.

Photographing New Zealand

 

Last walk at Circle B until Fall.

Sushi for breakfast.

Walking down the trail I could hear a baby bird calling overhead. Looking up I saw this juvenile red shoulder hawk up in the tree.

Then I realized that Mom was a tree over with a frog trying to get the baby to follow her over. The baby wanted Mom to come feed it but Mom was trying to get him to fly over.

These baby turkeys were very skittish. Mom was keeping an eye on me.

Lots of young alligators along the trail.

Everything was green when I last was at Circle B Bar Reserve in mid-May. Now it’s too hot to walk there and the main trails are usually closed due to alligators mating and nesting close by until at least October so I’ll be staying close to home or the coast.

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Cute little baby bird

While I was at Gatorland in early May, I kept seeing this tiny bird hopping around in the bushes behind me on the boardwalk. It was a baby blue-gray gnatcatcher. Mom was close by but stayed farther into the bushes. These guys usually move around so fast but the baby was posing for me nicely. Most people come to the bird rookery here to get pictures of the big waders including egrets and herons but if you look closely you can see some of the little songbirds as well.

Boring vacation pictures

View of the beach from the Naples pier before sunset.

Shots above are from the Naples beach at the hotel we stayed at. All private condos on both sides of our hotel so the beach was pretty quiet.

View from our room. Watching the sun come up in the morning and then the storms roll in during the afternoon before dinner. We didn’t splurge for a beach view since we live in Tampa and spend a fair amount of time on the beach. If you are coming from up north, I highly recommend getting the beach view anywhere you stay if possible. We stayed at the Edgewater Beach Resort which was nice and quiet while we were there.

Our view eating lunch at the Tin City marina.

Back at our hotel after dinner. One night the storms came in so no sunset.

The last night we were there, a huge fire had been burning close by and covered the sunset in smoke.

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