I looked outside the back window one morning in late April and saw these beauties walking around so I had to run out and get some shots. They were heading off the golf course and into the woods before the golfers come through.
Early one morning I saw this guy and went outside to take this. His face was all muddy. He was in the shade and didn’t stay still so it was hard to get a good shot of him.
I took these outside as well. He was napping on the hanging basket.
Squirrels being cute in the backyard. Taken through the window.
A wasp on the bird bath when I was cleaning it out.
A swallow tail kite cruising along the golf course. I took this through the window as well. I knew he’d be gone by the time I got outside and on the course.
We always have white ibis feeding through.
Several brown thrashers were feeding on the ground for several days. They must be nesting somewhere nearby.
These crows are very annoying. There are several that hang out in the backyard. They usually stay high up in the oak trees but recently they have been coming to the bird bath. They must have found some trash or someone was leaving food out because they were bringing food to the bird bath to soak before eating it. It looked like mostly bread but one day I ran out and chased one off the bath and he had an open pack of cheese crackers that he left as he flew off. I finally dumped the water out for a few days until they left.
We’ve been getting a lot of woodpeckers at the feeder lately. They grab a sunflower seed and take off. The other little birds usually leave when they are on it.
I was out watering my hanging baskets and saw the inchworm. I had to run in and get my camera and macro lens. Later that day I saw the green lizard and ran out to get shots of it. We have a ton of brown lizards and it’s rare to see a green one.
I’ve been seeing a lot of woodpeckers in the backyard. At one point there were 3 hanging out in different spots.
Occasionally I get a bluebird stopping by. They mostly hang out in my neighbor’s yard several townhomes down. These were all taken through the window. They are very skittish.
I was pretty excited to get a shot of a hooded warbler in the yard through the window. I saw one back in October as well but only got a blurry shot of him.I wonder if it’s the same one.
Pine warblers and northern parulas were stopping by the bird bath. I haven’t seen either in a while now so I hope they come back this fall.
Blue jays are always at the feeder.
A titmouse sits on top of the bluebird box. So far no birds have nested in it.
Turkeys were strutting by our windows in late March/early April. The first one was right in front of the window, the bottom 2 were taken across the golf course. I think these are 3 different ones since they have different face colors. I haven’t seen any in a while now. They may be nesting.
Down the street I found a juvenile night heron. Next year I’ll have to look for some nests early in the season.
Lots of unusual plants and flowers at the University of South Florida’s botanical gardens in Tampa. I don’t go to these gardens often but I was at Lettuce Lake in north Tampa recently and there wasn’t much wildlife there. Most of the park was still flooded due to recent rain so I left early and decided to stop by the gardens and see if there were any hummingbirds in the butterfly gardens. No hummingbirds but lots of butterflies. More on those later.
I rarely see green lizards.
A statue of a cow in the middle of the gardens? Not sure why. She was cute though.
After climbing 3 stories to the top of the observation tower at Lettuce Lake, I look over at the pine tree to the left of the tower and this guy was staring right at me. He’s looking at me like “What are you doing up here?”. I’ve never seen them up close before. He stayed for a few minutes then took off to catch a fish. I missed the big splash since he was so close near the tower but caught him flying away with a fish.
A great egret flies by the tower.
Turtles and alligators in the water below. The gator was going after that water bottle.
Tiny critters on the boardwalk.
A juvenile blue heron basking in the sun on the boardwalk.
Another reason to stay away from the squirrels. The bottom pictures shows a big sore near his back. This is a botfly bite. I won’t gross you out with the details. It doesn’t kill the squirrels but is probably just very itchy and annoying. Eventually it should heal. I see these sores a lot on the squirrels in the summer.
A fancy lunch left over by the limpkins.
I think this is some type of cicada. He was making a lot of noise for such a tiny bug.
A prothonotary warbler. They nest here in the summer.
I heard whistling and saw the black bellied whistling ducks on the top of the observation tower, only because there weren’t any people on the tower yet.
I snuck up the first flight of stairs and saw them looking down at me. I didn’t want to scare them off so I went back down and headed away from the tower. After a few minutes someone came down the boardwalk and headed up the tower so they flew off.
Some of the little critters at the lake.
Some young limpkins hiding under a tree near the boardwalk.
Butterflies were everywhere at Bok Tower Gardens in late October so I got a lot of butterfly shot practice. There were still a lot of summer flowers out. Now I can’t wait to go back in the spring to see everything blooming then. I was trying to take a closeup picture of a butterfly when I noticed something green moving on the next flower. That little lizard barely moved as I moved in to get a shot of him. He was so tiny, that flower didn’t even bend with him on it.
The frogs were a bonus. I had walked around the historic home at the gardens and in front of the house was a water fountain with frog statues along the bottom. I walked down a path and saw a little pond with a frog sitting pretty on the side. I said out loud “You’re not real” thinking it was another statue and it jumped up and landed in water. So I missed out on a jumping shot.