It’s not easy getting close up shots of dolphins at the fishing pier. They pop up at random places and move so fast that they are gone before you can get your lens focused. If the light is bad and the water is dark, it’s hard to see them coming up. On a recent Saturday morning, the light was good and I could see them coming up fairly early. They were doing zoomies towards the pier since the bait fish were thick right under the pier. They were filling up on tiny appetizers.
A beautiful sunny morning, taken with my phone.
The usual birds were finding snacks.
I had stopped by the fishing pier at Fort Desoto before heading home to see if “Harry” the hybrid (great blue heron/great egret) was hanging around. He was still there in his usual spot but I got distracted by the dolphins and ended up leaving an hour later.
On the road to south Florida, this famous eyesore sits at the Yeehaw Junction right before the Florida turnpike exit.
Sitting poolside at Brett’s aunt and uncle’s winter condo, we had a nice dinner with the family, watching the dinner boats go by.
Construction cranes are everywhere here, including next to our hotel.
On the road to Hallendale Beach sits a big statue in the parking lot at the horse race track. After the statue, we turn right to head over the bridge to the beach.
We stopped by Hard Rock Hotel to see the new guitar shaped hotel going up. The last 2 are shots from the top of the parking deck. You can barely make out the skyline of the beach.
The road back to Tampa, we headed across Alligator Alley (I75). We never see alligators on this road though. Just miles of the above view.
Late afternoon on Hallandale Beach, north of Miami. A quick walk before dinner.
Things on the beach. The beach was littered with Portuguese man o’ wars. I would not want to come close to one of these in the water. They are known to have a painful sting.
Tile on the walkway and hibiscus near the parking lot.
Big boats are common along the inter-coastal waterway.
Heading home before crossing Alligator Alley.
Some parting shots from our quick trip to south Florida to visit Brett’s relatives.
I rarely go to Clearwater Beach anymore. It’s very crowded and cost a fortune to park, if you can get a parking spot. Although, it is fun to go over every once in while to see what’s going on. Right after I picked up my sister from the airport we headed over to the beach to walk around. She had not been in several years. We were hoping to get a good sunset but dark clouds had moved in. I guess the weather had kept most people indoors because it wasn’t too crowded the Tuesday before Christmas. It was fun walking around the beach and marina.
A reddish egret hanging around the fishing pier.
This is the rare hybrid that was seen recently hanging around the fishing pier. Local experts say it’s a cross between a great blue heron and a great egret. He’s got a great blue heron beak and body but legs of a great egret. I found him pretty easily right on the pier, looking for a handout like the other birds.
Great blue heron portrait.
An osprey flying by.
This snowy egret has found a good perch.
Someone caught a big one.
It’s always fun to guess where these big ships are going.
I caught this kestrel flying over my head.
He flew over to the top of a pine tree.
Then a frigatebird flew close to the pier.
A juvenile hawk. He let me get pretty close.
The young reddish egret is still hanging around the pier. I’m beginning to wonder if this is a hybrid of some sort. Is it an offspring of a reddish egret and a white morph reddish egret?
A cormorant preening on a light post.
The osprey couple that nests near the Fort were hanging around together. If this warm weather keeps up this December, nesting season will be starting much earlier this year.
A usual sight at the pier. A big boat passing the lighthouse at Egmont Key.
Just another perfect day at the beach.
The osprey (or fish hawk) is a fairly common bird here At least for me. I see them in my neighborhood, on the bridges to and from work, in the parking lot at work and most of the parks that are near water. I was walking the trail at the east beach at Fort Desoto looking to see if the owls were back and all I could find were osprey. There are several nests along this trail that sits right on the beach so you can always find several here.
I watched the osprey fly off the branch and circle over my head.
As she was heading toward the water, I thought she was going to grab a fish. Instead she just landed on the edge and stayed there for a few minutes.
Then she took off and fly far down the beach. Oh well.
Now it’s just me and another common bird, the boring ole great blue heron out on the beach.
And a big boat cruising by.
No luck on the owls yet but it’s very early.
Another sighting of the juvenile reddish egret. He’s just a little bit bigger than when I saw him a few weeks ago.
The juvenile osprey flying by the pier.
Great blue heron flyby.
Black skimmers cruising by the fishing pier.
A really big boat.
In the shadow of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
A sunny morning at Fort Desoto before the summer rains started.