A new bird at the Sunshine Skyway fishing pier

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My 2nd trip to the Sunshine Skyway fishing pier to look for the rare kittiwake was successful. I parked my car near the end of the pier (you can drive on this pier since it used to be the old bridge) and got out of my car thinking I was going to spend hours looking at every bird flying by for it. Well, it was sitting right outside my car. I took this from my car window.

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He had a friend, the royal tern, standing next to him.

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Many birds were on the pier even though it was a windy cold morning.

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After watching him for a few minutes, he stood up. By now several other photogs were standing there taking his picture.

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He flew off.

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Snowy egrets were hitching a ride on a fishing boat.

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Sleepy pelican.

The rare kittiwake sighting in central Florida comes at a price. Because the two birds (yes, there were two at first) picked a busy fishing pier, one of them got caught in a fish hook and sinker and died about a week after they arrived. A birder happened to be on the pier and saw the rare birds and posted it on a bird forum. Hoards of birders came from all over the state to see the birds. Several people saw the bird swallow the sinker and get hooked and posted the event on the bird forum. Not to mention all of the hooked pelicans, loons, gulls and terns that they saw. Because the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary is not taking in injured birds  due to financial issues, they did not respond to the numerous phone calls they got. A new bird rescue group  is starting up and hopefully they will be able to help save many of the injured birds there. More on injured loons later.

An article about the recent kittiwake death and all of the injured birds at fishing pier from The Tampa Bay Times can be found here.

Check out more pictures at Our World Tuesday  Our World Tuesday Graphic

8 thoughts on “A new bird at the Sunshine Skyway fishing pier

  1. I love that area of Florida, espec. Ft. DeSoto park….I have been to the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, in fact….you have captured a lovely and fun series of pix….(the Sunshine Skyway is scary to me)

  2. I feel so bad for the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary. I went to see them when I was around St. Pete. I didn’t realize they were going through this crisis.

  3. Beautiful bird and pictures. But how sad about the hooked one and all the other injuries. We just recently visited Save Our Seabirds at Sarasota. I assume that is a different place than the Suncoast Sanctuary? I have so much to learn.

  4. Those are amazing photos. I’m glad I came across your blog. The pier is one of my favorite fishing spots to go. If you like the skyway pier as much as I do I think you’ll enjoy this video.. I took this from the south pier a few weeks ago…http://youtu.be/mxDt4Zldyv0

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