I had heard the purple martins were back at the Dunedin marina so one morning I drove around to the front of the marina to see if I could get some shots of them in the bird house. I also found some other birds there as well. The spotted sandpipers will be going back up north soon
Pigeons get no respect but they are pretty when the sun shines on them.
A kingfisher was hanging out on the channel marker at the entrance to the marina.
All of the usual birds were there. Green herons, great egrets and pelicans.
The purple martins were busy moving in to the martin house. It looks like most of them were in couples and had staked out their spots. Last year I found them when the babies were almost fully grown and ready to leave to I’m hoping this year I can see some young babies.
The view from the purple martin house. You can see Clearwater beach across the water. It used to be a quiet little beach area with 2 story Mom and Pop hotels but not anymore. All highrises and the traffic is terrible. Parking is $30 a day. Only the tourists go to this beach now.
In early August I stopped by the baseball fields near my house to see if any parakeets were nesting. Getting out of the car I could see the nest high up in the light post. The clouds were moving in over the sun you could just make out a faint rainbow around it.
I could hear loud screaming coming from below the light post in the big pile of sticks. The parakeets build their nests at the bottom of the osprey nests and go in from underneath. The osprey have long left since they nest late winter. These monk parakeets were busying flying in and out but I didn’t see any young ones. There were several entrance holes to this one big nest.
A few of them flew over to the tree and hung out there for a while.
Some of the other light posts that didn’t have nests were full of pigeons taking a nap.
A tricolored heron posing on top of the ballfield fence, in the outfield.
There weren’t any games going on while I was there and the park was pretty quiet with a few people on the tennis courts. There were at least 8 empty osprey nests here but it’s hard to get good shots of the babies since the nests are so high up. Years ago I saw some loggerhead shrikes juveniles here but I didn’t see any here today. I’ll check back on another quiet day.
Sailboats far across the bay. The above was taken with my 300mm lens. The below was taken with my phone so you can see how far away they were.
What a perfect winter morning in early February. It was sunny and 72 degrees. I stopped by the Safety Harbor fishing pier before heading home after my walk and the park and pier were packed with people hanging out. There was a kiteboarder skimming across the bay in front of the fishing pier and someone flying a kite next to the pier. People were out walking their dogs and kids were playing in the field along the water. Sailboats were cruising by. This was our early spring. Soon it will be too hot and no one will be here but the skeeters and the pigeons
Pigeons in the park. They don’t get a lot of respect but they are really pretty when the sun hits those iridescent feathers.
A pelican flying into the mangroves next to another one that was napping.
White pelicans flying high up over the fishing pier.
A juvenile blue heron looking for food in the muck at low tide.