Morning walk at Possum Branch Preserve.

The fields along the trail was starting to get over-grown in late May at Possum Branch Preserve. Once the grass gets knee high it’s a little creepy to veer off the trail and get close to the marsh.

Baby bluebirds hanging out in a dead tree. Looks like they were just learning to fly.

The usual.

This guy (male lesser scaup) should have already flown north by mid-May.  Not sure why he was still hanging around but he wasn’t there the last time I was at the preserve.

The view from  the edge of one of the ponds.

I stopped by the local eagles nest on the way home that’s in a utility tower. I was checking to see if I could see any juvenile eagles hanging around but only the adult was sitting on the tower. Any babies could have been gone by then.

 

My Corner of the World

Happy 4th of July!

Brett and I were leaving the house to go out for a drive on Memorial Day. We were heading to the Bay Pines Veterans National Cemetery where my parents are buried for a walk and then to pick up lunch to bring home. Driving out the back way and past some apartments we saw a juvenile eagle sitting on utility box. Of course I yelled for Brett to stop. I had my camera in the car so he pulled over and I was able to get a few shots before the eagle took off. It’s not every day that you have an eagle pooping in your neighborhood.

He circled around over my head and then took off over the tree.

These babies were swimming around below him so he must have been hoping to get one but ended up leaving empty handed. Unless he came back later. There are a lot less babies in this family now.

Every Memorial Day Boy Scout troops put flags on the graves at the cemetery. It’s really impressive (but sad) to drive through and see all of the flags.

“Fly like an eagle, to the sea”

In late April I was walking along a trail near a golf course when I saw an eagle flying over my head. The eagle came flying back but this time he had an osprey chasing him. I’m assuming this is a territorial chase. There are a lot of osprey nests in the area and several had new babies on the nest. It only lasted for a few seconds and the eagle took off.

The next day Brett and I were out on the beach at Fort Desoto just hanging out in our beach chairs when an eagle flew right over us.

A few seconds later an osprey shows up and starts to bother the eagle. They chased each other across the sand dunes then then the osprey took off. There was an eagle nest close by in a utility tower but the babies are already grown and gone. There are also many osprey nests all over the park.

The eagle made a few more passes over our beach chairs and came really close at one point. The above is not cropped although I had my 300mm lens on my camera.

After the eagle left, an osprey also flew by.

A common sight far out in the gulf, an osprey grabbing a fish.

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A lost opportunity

Above is an eagle’s nest from 2 years ago at the horse farm near my house. Last winter they nested in a high utility tower instead of this nest. They had taken over an old osprey nest in the tower. I had heard that they were back working on this nest in mid-November so I stopped by the day after a nasty storm had come through the area. When I got to the spot at the farm, the tree was completely empty and the nest was gone.

Here it was on the ground next to the tree. The entire nest had come crashing down and broke apart. It broke my heart to see it on the ground in pieces. I was wondering if this old couple would have it in them to rebuild this nest again or just go back to the utility tower. There wasn’t much of the old tree left.

After walking around the farm for a few minutes, an eagle flies over my head with some nesting material in it. I think this must have been his first visit to the nest this morning.

The mate flew in as well. They seemed confused. Where was their nest? What happened to the tree? The eagle dropped the nesting material and they both took off. At this point, they haven’t returned to the nest to rebuild. I’m assuming they are now back up in the high utility tower close by.

Babies and an eagle

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.

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“Fly like an eagle”

Boy, those baby eagles grow up fast.  I didn’t get to see them for a few weeks and now they are sitting up looking like a grown up.

The oldest one was flapping his wings pretty hard but wasn’t getting too much height yet. I’m sure it won’t be long. I don’t know if I’ll make it back before they fly away.

One of the proud parents in a snag close by.

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Same Ole, Same Ole

The barred owls have been hanging out next to the parking lot for a while now.

The reserve is full of green herons. They are now a usual suspect.

Along with male anhingas showing off.

And the glossy ibis sparkling in the sun are a dime a dozen.

The cute pied grebes aren’t as skittish as they use to be.

There’s always snowy egrets in a body of water.

Now I see purple gallinules every time I walk Alligator Alley trail.

Even a great blue heron baby in the nest during spring is common here.

Seeing a bald eagle somewhere in the park is pretty common, even if its way up high half hidden in a cypress tree.

But I still love walking the trails at Circle B Bar Reserve and seeing all of the above every time I’m here. Even when it gets crowded on the weekends. I just get there a little earlier and leave before lunch when the crowd starts coming in.

Our World Tuesday Graphicimage-in-ing

Bald eagle twins

From far away I could see the bald eagle in the tree.

This is all I saw for several weeks. An adult bald eagle sitting low on the nest.

I didn’t get a chance to stop by the eagle’s nest near my neighborhood for several weeks. I finally stopped by thinking I was going to be disappointed since there were no babies here last year. Boy was I surprised. Not one big baby but two sitting proudly on the nest. They looked almost as big as their parents. There was a parent on the nest the entire time I was there so they were still pretty young even though they looked so big. I stayed for a while hoping to see the other parent bring in food but I couldn’t stay much longer past lunchtime. I’ll be back though. All of the above were extremely cropped.

The eagle has landed

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Way up high, in the sky….   Circling over my head, this is extremely cropped.

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Coming in for a landing.

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Checking things out.

At this point, I can’t tell what’s going on at the eagle’s nest near my house. The weekend before this, I didn’t see anyone on the nest, but one of them could have been laying down sleeping and I just couldn’t see them. This morning in early February, I was thinking the same thing. No sign of life, then this guys comes flying in as I was leaving. I’m hoping they are just getting a late start on the family this year. Other eagle nests in the area are already getting little babies. I’ll keep checking.  If you haven’t seen the baby eagles yet at the Fort Myers eagle cam, you should check them out. They are growing fast.  This is about 2 hours south of Tampa.

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The eagles are back on the nest!

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Just a few pictures of the eagles near my house. I finally saw them both on the nest recently. One was on the nest and the other was sitting on top of the dead tree the nest is in. I’m hoping they are getting ready for eggs or there may already be eggs on the nest. I’ll keep you posted.

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The loud peacocks that live on the farm where the eagle’s nest is were looking at me like I was crazy.  They were thinking “That crazy lady is back with her black box on her face”.

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