Pelicans flying by.
Cormorant flying by.
I saw this red shoulder hawk sitting high up in a cypress tree. Took a couple of shots and then I kept going down the trail, thinking she was taking a break.
I got all the way across the pond and heard the hawk screaming. I looked over and saw the above. These are extremely cropped. Guess we’ll be having baby hawks soon. These were all taken at Possum Branch Preserve. It’s a small watershed area not too far from my house. It sits on a corner of one of the busiest intersections in the area. Except for the traffic noise, the trail is very quiet.
Yes, pied grebes are everywhere in central Florida.
Sparrow watching me.
Yellowlegs walking around in a pond. I don’t see these guys very often.
Cattle egret flyby.
I saw these ducks up ahead in the pond. When we got close, they all took off flying. I realized as they flew by that they were all northern shovelers. It’s not often we see them around.
The sun had gone behind a dark cloud and we were heading towards the parking lot when I saw a red shoulder hawk fly by. I saw him land on a pole with another hawk and they started going at it for a few seconds. Not a good shot but at least we know there won’t be a shortage of hawks next year.
Our New Year’s day trip to Sarasota ended in a quick walk around the Celery Fields before hitting the highway to head back home. It was getting late and the sun had gone behind dark clouds before going down. I hadn’t been to the fields in over a year so I wanted to see if it had changed. It was a lot more overgrown in the ponds than I remembered. There wasn’t a lot of birds around and the few that were there were pretty skittish. We saw a lot of hawks on our walk and one bald eagle from very far away.
The Celery Fields used to be a celery farm many years ago and is now run by Sarasota county as a storm water collection zone. It’s right off the highway and easy to get to if you’re in the Sarasota area. It’s been known as a sandhill crane roosting area at certain times of the year, I think primarily in the fall. We did see a few of the cranes during our walk but they were far back in the ponds.