Hot morning at Horsepower for Kids.

The ducks were cooling off with a bath at Horsepower for Kids Animal Sanctuary in late June. It made me want to jump in with them and go for a swim.

I decided not to jump in the pond since the geese own the pond and they are aggressive.

Even the tricolored heron was cooling off in the water.

I’m not sure if this white pigeon was a resident or just a visitor. He wasn’t in a cage. 

Some of the chickens hanging around.

Jealous of this guy sleeping (maybe not in the dirt though).

Close ups of the faces at the petting zoo.

A Saturday morning walk around the petting zoo.

 

A wood duck convention

I stopped by Lake Morton in Lakeland on the way home from Circle B Bar Reserve in mid-May. I usually see one or two wood duck couples there but on this trip they were all around the lake. Sleeping in the grass, hanging out on the swan fences, chasing each other. They must have been gathering for a baby making convention. I have not made it back over to the lake since then so I’m not sure it there were a lot of babies but I would hope so..

All of the usual suspects were there.

Feeding the fowl is encouraged at the lake although bread is extremely discouraged.  They have feeders that are filled with pellets that you can buy a handful for a quarter. This lady was feeding them cracked corn.

Clouds were rolling in and it was time to go home for lunch.

SkyWatch Friday

 

Mama goose

Some of the water birds at Horsepower for Kids during my visit in mid-March.

One of these doesn’t belong. An ibis hanging out with the geese on the edge of the pond.

It’s always fun to see the peacocks showing off.

I saw this goose sleeping on the grass in the shade. I was wondering why she wasn’t sitting on her egg, hoping she realized it was there and wasn’t going to reject it.

Later I saw why. She was sitting on a lot of eggs and they all didn’t fit. She did move the one egg closer to her after she got up and stretched. She’s going to be a busy mom.

Getting frisky

The swans at Lake Morton were showing off in early April. It was mating season for all of the critters at the lake.

Lots of couples floating around together.

No “rooms” for these couples. They were getting frisky right there at the lake.

Even the geese were getting frisky. Although, not sure what was going on with this threesome. They are always together.

Later, they were strutting around looking very proud of themselves.

Lots of action at Lake Morton in downtown Lakeland. It felt like a warm spring day and all of the ducks, geese and swans were feeling it.

Photographing New Zealand

 

Noccalula Falls

I left Brett back in Tampa and headed up to Birmingham to visit my sister over Easter weekend. Even though Friday was going to be a cloudy rainy day, we risked it and headed up about an hour north of Birmingham to visit the past. Noccalula Falls was our destination. I hadn’t been since the early 70’s and was wondering if it looked the same. I’m sure a lot has changed but I remembered the park looking bigger. The story is that an Indian princess was already in love with someone else but her father told her she had to marry a neighboring chief instead so she fell to her death.  Full story here. We were there after a big storm so the water was heavy coming over the falls.

Looking through the trees and down the Black Creek Gorge.

Some of the old buildings on display throughout the park.

Canadian geese at the top of the falls.

I found some old pictures that my dad had taken of the falls back in 1973.  My sister and were posing on an old wagon (I’m on the left). We looked for the wagon when we were there but couldn’t find it. I think we were pretending to hold on to the reins. My dad always liked actions shots

SkyWatch Friday

A gaggle of geese.

The animal sanctuary/petting zoo near my house, Horsepower for Kids, has a small pond with a handful of geese (somehow “gaggle” of geese just sounds silly).  The one above thought he was “King of the pond” standing on the overturned rowboat.

He (or she) seemed to be very popular. Late October isn’t really nesting season but here in central Florida when it’s 85 degrees I guess all year round is nesting season. It was interesting to watch them interact.  A third one was trying to get in on the act.

They were eating mangrove leaves that were growing through the fence.

5 days into winter and it’s still hot down here.

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A lone pelican floating in the lake.

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Pretty pigeons.

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The obnoxious geese gang.

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A limpkin getting a snack.

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I’m thinking this is a palm warbler but not sure.

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A couple of coots.

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Sexy squirrel.

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Ibis at the lake.

Random things on my recent walk around the downtown St. Pete neighborhood lake, Crescent Lake Park.

Ducks and geese at Crescent Lake Park

DSC_2634 DSC_2652Why was the muscovy duck in the tree?  Looking for bugs?  A place to nest?

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After a long rain, the ducks were taking a bath in a puddle in the street.

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A few of the geese at the lake. The one hiding was sitting on eggs.

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Baby moorhens at all ages.

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A distinguished face.

The muscovy ducks and geese are very aggressive at Crescent Lake Park. People have been feeding them for years so they are all very fat and happy. I stay far away and take pictures with my zoom lens. If you get too close without food, they will attack. If they have babies, they will attack.  If they are napping, they will attack. Lesson here is to stay away from the wildlife.