A beautiful morning out

Bees and berries at Crescent Lake Park.

I found the otter again but this time he was very elusive. I got a quick peek and then he disappeared for good.

This gull should have been over at the beach. Somehow he managed to snag a small fish at the lake.

I was standing under some trees looking for the otter and heard some noise over my head. I looked up and found two juvenile anhingas looking down at me. They must be late babies. There was a tiny nest that they had outgrown but they were still too young to fly yet. Mom was sitting high up in the next tree.

After leaving Crescent Lake Park, I made the quick drive over to North Shore beach near downtown St. Pete. Someone had recently painted the small concrete pier.

Another beautiful day at the bay.

P.S. Happy Birthday to my sister Debbie!

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Very few birds in late December

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I stopped by to visit my buddy Big Red. When there are no other birds around you can always count on Big Red to be there.

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Taking off to catch some fish.

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Mullet up close. Some guys were on the beach catching mullet in a net. After 10 years of watching them jump out of the water in my backyard, this is the first time I’ve seen one up close.  Other than the smoked mullet that my husband likes to eat.

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Sorry guy, but you’re going to end up on a cracker.

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Eating a dropped chip on a picnic table.

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Berries were all over the park.

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Butterflies are still around.

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As well as the yellow beach flowers.

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Weird grass growing on the beach.

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Two female ring billed ducks looking for some action.

Not many birds around at Fort Desoto park right before the holidays.

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Blooming in the winter

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Pretty things were still blooming in the winter in central Florida. On a cold (60 degrees) sunny morning I headed out for a good 3 hour walk. I went to the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo. Not many birds there but still lots of flowers blooming. I know, everyone else is showing off their pretty snow pictures but soon they’ll be wishing they were down here for a visit.

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Fun things at Circle B Bar Reserve

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Fly on a sign. Notice the hair on his bottom.

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Berries waiting to be eaten.

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This blue-gray gnatcatcher was posing for me.

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They don’t have any bright colors but their personality makes up for it.

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The number of limpkins at the reserve seem lower than in the past. I only saw a few on this visit.

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Yummy breakfast.

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 I’ve been seeing a lot of pileated woodpeckers lately.

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Anhinga posing in front of the yellow flowers.

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A great blue heron prancing down the trail.

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The black bellied whistlers didn’t seem to mind the glossy ibis getting so close.

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In a huddle.

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Hiding in the yellow flowers.

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The usual alligator close to the trail.

The first week in December was perfect. Cool sunny days. I had to get out for yet another long walk at Circle B Bar Reserve.

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After the rain

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Everything was wet.

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Water dripping everywhere.

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A young cardinal drying off in the bushes.

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Berries dripping.

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Yellow flowers were everywhere.

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Beaten down.

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Wet Carolina wren on the ground.

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View from the boardwalk.

It has poured all night. I was tempted to stay in bed on Saturday morning. I decided to get up because I hear that rain brings the birds in. When I headed out to Chesnut Park, the rain had stopped. According to the weather radar it was not going to rain again that morning. I did get a few sprinkles. The dark clouds did not clear up like the news said. It was dark all morning. I struggled to get any decent pictures. I had my ISO up to 3200 but still had trouble getting a clear shot in the woods. The park was flooded, the boardwalks were slippery and the birds were scarce. The few that were there were high up in the trees. Too high to get pictures. At least I was out and got a good 3 hour walk in.

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