I think most of the eagles are back in Florida for the winter and the famous couple down at Fort Myers already have eggs. You can see the web came here. I finally saw one of the eagles not too far from my house on the horse farm. He was sitting in a tree across the street from the nest. I didn’t see anyone on the nest but the mate could have been sleeping on it and I just couldn’t see her from the street.
I spotted the peacocks wandering around the neighborhood where the eagle’s nest is located. There are now a ton of them all over the place. They were pretty quiet when I stopped by but I bet they can wake up the whole neighborhood when they start screaming.
They were all over the neighborhood.
I stopped to take a picture of the eagle in the tree and a horse came over to check me out.
At a nearby pond, I found a kildeer couple.
One of them was wandering down the sidewalk in front of the houses. His friend was across the street in front of the pond.
I was excited to see the eagle back at the horse farm. I’m hoping for another successful eagle family again this year.
A pileated woodpecker high up in the tree. I heard they nested close by here this summer. I totally missed the boat on it this year. Next year I’m going to try to get down here to see baby pileateds. To see some amazing baby woodpeckers screaming at mom, see Jim Gray’s shots here . He has the patience of a saint and will sit there all day waiting for those babies to wake up.
The preserve was full of these grasshoppers. They were on ground all over the trails and would hop up in front of me to get out the way. At one point, one hopped on my shoulder. They have a pretty dotted pattern on their back wings, almost like a leopard print. When they hop away, they look yellow.
A skipper on the blade of grass.
A nearby goat farm. They all looked so cute grazing.
Or do they?
This one looked cute. He was standing close to the fence.
Across the street from the goat farm was a horse pasture with a few horses grazing. I’m not sure what that is on his face. I’ve never seen that before. I’m guessing something to keep the bugs out of his eyes? I bet Theresa from Run A Round Ranch knows why that cover is on his face.
I had heard of Felts Preserve (in between St. Petersburg and Sarasota) but had not made it there. I had heard it was a big painted and indigo bunting stop-over during migration and still had not gone. Someone told me it was near the outlet mall. Oh! I usually get to the outlet mall about twice a year. It’s almost an hour south of my house. It’s a beautiful drive down (over the Sunshine Skyway Bridge) and tons of great stores but life (or birding) usually gets in the way of shopping. After two hours of shopping, I found the preserve. It’s a small preserve, only 27 acres and is in the middle of cow, goat and horse farms. The land was donated to the Audubon Society when Otis Felts died in 2002. I was crazy to go in July. It was hot and I had to put on two coats of bug spray. The only bird I saw was the pileated woodpecker. The air was filled with grasshoppers, gnats and mosquitos. But, I can’t wait to get back there in the fall. I think it has potential when migration starts (and it’s always nice to be able to pick up a few bargains at the outlet mall before hand).
The parent looking around. The babies were on the other side of the tree trunk on the right.
It’s a big nest.
This is the 2nd time I’ve seen bluebirds hanging around near the nest. I didn’t see any last year. They’ll be leaving soon to head back up north.
The lone baby chicken is getting big. I was glad to see it doing well.
This horse was very friendly.
There were several other people there watching the eagle’s nest on my most recent trip and this horse wanted attention.
It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon so I decided to stop by the eagle’s nest one more time to see how the big babies were doing. They were pretty big at this point. They looked to be the size of the parents. One was already flapping his wings pretty good. It’s peaceful there and I like seeing all of the peacocks and chickens running around. I took a ton of pictures on this trip since the weather was so nice and the birds were pretty active. I’ll post more later.