A sad story on a beautiful afternoon

It was a beautiful afternoon in late January and I was able to get outside for a little while on a late Friday before sunset. I jumped in the car and headed over to Dunedin, thinking I would stop by the fishing pier and then go over for a quick walk at the causeway. I was snapping the shot of the water when I turned around and noticed the two osprey that had built a nest on top of the building next to the pier.  I was pretty excited to see the camera up on the top but when I got home and searched it, you could only see over the building so the camera wasn’t look down on the nest. Would have been fun to watch that nest up close.

I found this cute little boat in the marina that I hadn’t seen before.

I headed over to the beach area on the causeway and saw the sailboat that has washed up back in November during Hurricane ETA. I had seen many pictures of it posted on the internet, people climbing and playing on it. They had it roped off which didn’t make for a pretty picture. I have since heard that it was hauled away a few weeks after I took this. The state of these old damaged sailboats are sad. At some point years ago, someone paid a lot of money for this boat. Probably used it at first. Then it sits out there for a long time and becomes a hazard. The owner, if they had insurance, probably just collected and moved on. Many people with these old boats let their insurance lapse and the city pays for the haul. Not sure if they can sell them for scrap.

On a sad note, at the end of the causeway, a dead dolphin had washed up on shore hours before I arrived. Everyone was standing around watching the marine life rescue team (with Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where Winter the flipperless dolphin resides) get him ready to be taken away. They will do a necropsy on him to find out the cause of death. Was he old? Sick?  Eaten something bad? Hit with a boat? Swallowed too many fish hooks from stealing fish from the fishermen at the pier? So many questions.  Everyone was watching from a respectful distance. It was sad to watch these volunteers do their work.

image-in-ing: weekly photo linkup

Our World Tuesday Graphic

The beach has reopened.

On the trail at Fort Desoto. A butterfly and some kind of fruit that I have never noticed before. The red really stuck out in all of the green right on the trail.

A snowy egret trying to steal a snack from a fisherman.

Some of the birds near the fountain includes a loggerhead shrike, a female summer tanager and an ibis.

Dolphins were swimming around the pier.

Looking across the lagoon, lots of different shorebirds. The  middle shot has black skimmers in the front and the bottom picture shows red knots.

It was the first week in May and the park had just recently opened. I got there early and was leaving before 10am and shot this from the pier. The beach was filling up fast. Time for me to head home.

SkyWatch Friday

Morning walk on the beach

dsc_5700 dsc_5690 dsc_5683

Young royal terns and sandwich terns were yelling at the parents to get them fish.

dsc_5712

Ghost crab on the beach.

dsc_5676

Sandwich terns showing off.

dsc_5655

dsc_5669

dsc_5663

dsc_5658

Young black bellied plovers. I’m not sure if they were fighting or  playing.

dsc_5652

dsc_5761

Ibis looking for snacks.

dsc_5671

A hawk flies by on the beach.

dsc_5648

A dolphin goes by out in the gulf.

The last of my Sanibel Island vacation pictures.

Swimming under the water

DSC_4079 DSC_4085 DSC_4086 DSC_4106

There was a manatee right in front of the fishing pier. He stayed in the same spot for a while before moving on. They usually swim past quickly the few times I’ve seen one here. As I leaned over to take a picture, he stuck his nose up for air.

DSC_4140

DSC_4176

DSC_4179

DSC_4187

Dolphins were swimming all around the pier.

DSC_4122

DSC_4132

The water was full of little jellyfish. I haven’t seen the water filled with jellyfish here before like this. They were floating far out at the end of the fishing pier so I don’t think they were bothering the people swimming close to shore.

DSC_4075

Someone caught a fish.

DSC_4152

DSC_4155

DSC_4158

The cormorants were diving under and getting fish. They seemed to be catching more that the fishermen on the pier.

It was a busy morning under the water around the fishing pier at Fort Desoto.

Saturday's Critters

Quiet Saturday morning at Fort Desoto

 

DSC_7112

Pretty pelican floating by.

DSC_7124

A cormorant sleeping on the top of the light post.

DSC_7104
DSC_7100

Dolphins were cruising by the pier.

DSC_7048
DSC_7049

This osprey did not want to share his meal. After a closer look, I didn’t want it anyway.

DSC_7056

Climbing a tree.

DSC_7076

Great egret getting a snack.

DSC_7069

It was a windy morning. The storm clouds had not moved in yet so the kiteboarders were out taking advantage of the wind. The park is pretty limited on wildlife sightings for the summer. Other than the usual laughing gull and reddish egret, there’s not much around the beach except tourists. When is summer over????

Skywatch Friday

A walk on the fishing pier

DSC_6391 DSC_6398 DSC_6402 DSC_6403 DSC_6408 DSC_6421
DSC_6412

The snowy egrets are always putting on a show at the fishing pier. They are hanging around waiting for the fishermen to turn their backs on their bait buckets so they can steal the little minnows. Sometimes the fisherman will clean their fish on the pier and the egrets try to steal the scraps. There are signs saying not to throw the scraps in the water or to the birds but some people still do it. Then the ones that don’t are annoyed by the birds being aggressive.

DSC_6384

A sting ray cruises by the pier in the shallow water.

DSC_6415

Dolphins feeding around the pier.

DSC_6428

Looks like he caught a little shark.

.DSC_6424

It was a beautiful morning to watch the big boats from the pier at Fort Desoto.

Skywatch Friday

Right before spring break at the beach.

 

DSC_3365

The laughing gulls were pairing up. Chasing each other and fighting over the ladies.

DSC_3360

Young herring gull with a snack.

DSC_3288

Blurry picture of a barn swallow. These guys rarely sit still. I saw him from across the lagoon.

DSC_3381

The dolphins were active this Saturday morning.

DSC_3376

Heading towards the pier.

DSC_3340

One of the bird steward volunteers at the park. He was checking out the roped off area for nesting birds. They work on keeping the tourist out of the nesting area and answer questions about the birds.

DSC_3351

Rush hour  traffic in the bay.

DSC_3371

Having fun on a boat ride.

A few things at Fort Desoto Park in mid-March.

 Skywatch Friday