Earlier in the summer I kept stopping by Chesnut Park to see if I could find the baby limpkins that had been spotted there. I kept missing them and I thought this trip would be a bust too. I first saw movement in the reeds along the boardwalk but it was just a green heron.
A little ways down the boardwalk I saw an adult limpkin.
I found them but they were almost fully grown at this point. There were 4 babies and they still had a little fuzz on their heads and were making that “baby is hungry” low screeching. They had just come out of the reeds and were looking around.
Mom headed into the water and found a yummy snail.
The youngest looking baby quickly swam over to her and got a bite.
I stood and watched for a while as they were busy preening and picking up empty snail shells, pretending to find a snack. They were acting like little toddlers, curiously getting into everything.
Mom continued to look for food and she ignored that little blue ball.
As I was watching the limpkins I saw movement from across the water. A least bittern came out from the other side of the reeds. He was still for a few minutes and then stood up several times as if to say “Here I am”. I thought that was a type of mating dance but I didn’t see another one anywhere. It could have been hiding deep in the reeds though.
All of a sudden it was almost noon and time to head home for lunch.
I was coming home from the grocery store early one morning and saw 2 little critters crossing the street right before my house. I slowed down and realized it was baby limpkins. I snapped the above and then went home, put up the groceries that had to go in the refrigerator, grabbed my camera, hopped on my bike and headed back down to the pond hoping they were still there.
They were still there with both parents. I’m assuming this was the family I found a few weeks earlier but there were only 4 babies instead of 5. They were about the right age to be them. I sat down on the grass and watched them for a while.
Both parents were busy feeding the babies.
The babies were busy trying to pretend to look for food but kept running back to the parents when the parents had food.
The babies were watching everything the parents did.
They were all over the place and it was impossible to get the entire family in one shot. Each parent was on opposite sides of the little pond with 2 kids. After feeding for a while they started preening and seemed to be settling into a rest time. I headed home, covered in bug bites since I forgot my bug spray.
I always love seeing cedar waxwings. They looks so magestic,. This is the 2nd spring I’ve seen them at Possum Branch Preserve. They are usually hidden deep in the trees but if you are really quiet you can hear them wheezing up there.
A few minutes later they all took off and moved over to tree on the other side of the pond. I noticed the yellow tips on the bottom of his feathers in this shot.
There’s always a lot of alligators and bunnies here.
One of the ponds here is fenced in. It’s used as a watershed but I’m not sure why this one is fenced and the others are not. I found a family of limpkins moving along the fence in early April. The parents had 4 babies. They stayed hidden in the brush along the fence but I could see them looking for a way into the fenced pond. One of the parents flew in and two of the babies were able to get through the fence holes. The other parent stayed on the outside with the other 2 but eventually they also made it through the fence. If they stay in the fenced area another day or two those babies won’t make it back through until they can fly out.
It was a warm sunny morning and this great blue heron was panting.
I found some very young mute swans preening at Lake Morton at the end of July. These young adults were born early this year and were acting like they own the place.
Juvenile male wood ducks. Just starting to get their male colors in.
I also found some female wood ducks.
This cute little limpkin family stole my heart. Both babies were staying close to Mom.
Wood duck babies are so cute. I found this little family at a hidden pond at the Largo Botanical Gardens in May.
After walking around the gardens, I headed over to Largo Nature Preserve and found this baby limpkin following Mom under the boardwalk.
I was staring at this turtle that was sitting just underneath the below.
A bald eagle was sitting on a utility tower in the park. I don’t think anyone else walking by noticed the eagle just sitting up there.
I was taking pictures of the colors of the high plants across the creek and looked down and saw these guys staring up at me like “Feed us.”
All taken back in late April.
I was walking along the boardwalk at Lettuce Lake Park and look down and saw this limpkin family. The Mom was teaching the littlest one how to find the snails and get the food out.
After feeding the last one, Mom needed a break and she flew up to the boardwalk and stood next to me and stretched.
The 3 little babies kept busy by themselves while Mom rested on the boardwalk rail. They were busy preening and trying to find their own snails. Every once in a while they would look up to make sure Mom was still there. Eventually, someone came walking down the boardwalk so the Mom flew back down into the swamp and started to walk off with the 3 little ones behind her.
I think this is a very young red-eyed vireo.
A prothonotary warbler. They nest here in the summer.
I heard whistling and saw the black bellied whistling ducks on the top of the observation tower, only because there weren’t any people on the tower yet.
I snuck up the first flight of stairs and saw them looking down at me. I didn’t want to scare them off so I went back down and headed away from the tower. After a few minutes someone came down the boardwalk and headed up the tower so they flew off.
Some of the little critters at the lake.
Some young limpkins hiding under a tree near the boardwalk.
I stumbled on this muscovy duck family at Lake Morton back in late May. They were so cute. They stayed close together and close to Mom. I rarely see all yellow babies so this was a treat.
Near the duck family, hidden in the reeds along the lake, was a family of limpkins. There were 3 babies that were very shy. I couldn’t get them all together. They did not want to stay in one place very long. Mom wanted to take a nap and the babies kept moving around.
A little dose of cuteness for the morning.
Linking to Saturday’s Critters