I was watering some hanging plants right before dark in the backyard when I noticed this face peeking out of my neighbor’s dead palm tree. The house next door had been empty for at least 2 years. I think the lady that lived there was now in a nursing home. This was the first time I had seen a screech owl in our neighborhood.
Over the next two weeks I was able to catch the above. He (or she) would stick his head out right before dark. In the last two shots, he woke up earlier during the late afternoon. I would sneak around the backyard and hide behind a short palm tree to get pictures. I didn’t want to scare him away.
After 3 weeks of peeking out the side window right before dark every night, I came home from work and saw that the dead palm tree was gone. I ran outside and realized my neighbor’s entire backyard had been gutted and cleaned up. I was heartbroken. After 2 years it gets cleaned up now??? Then I heard a peep and saw the owl sitting in a palm tree that was still standing next door. He was looking at me like “Where’d my bed go?” I would assume he was sleeping when someone came in and started to saw the tree down. He must have flown out in panic. I can only hope he didn’t have eggs in there yet. I had not heard any baby noises yet. I stood there in the backyard crushed that my new friend had lost it’s home. I never saw him again after these shots were taken. I’m sure he moved on. I don’t know if it’s too late to put up a nest box in our yard.
Other critters in the backyard.
I was able to catch the sunset in the backyard while I was trying to get shots of the owl. One night I caught this rainbow driving into my neighborhood.
We headed over to the beach for a sunset walk on Christmas night. Clearwater beach was so packed that we didn’t stay long. We drove past the beach after a walk on Sand Key beach and then stopped along the causeway to take some pictures before heading home.
It was a beautiful night. Yes, that’s you standing in front of the water taking a picture Debbie.
On vacation in Sanibel Island. On our first night I walked out of our room and walked the 20 feet to the beach. The above was the view.
One day before lunch, we were watching a storm roll in. This was the only rain we saw during our 5 day stay, way off in the gulf.
Moon going down one morning.
An early walk on the beach produced the above.
On our last night, we had dinner at a restaurant near a marina and watched the sun go down. It was a beautiful drive back to our hotel.
We did a staycation in late September and drove 2 hours south of Tampa and stayed right on the beach in Sanibel Island. Tourist season was over and it was very calm and quiet. It was nice just to relax and hang out on the beach for several days. I took tons of pictures (I can only relax so much) so I’ll be boring you with my “What I did on my summer vacation” pictures coming up. I did bring my Nikon camera and several lenses but all of the above were taken with my Iphone.
This is a pano of north Tampa Bay taken with my phone at the Safety Harbor fishing Pier.
After an early dinner, we walked down to the fishing pier to watch the sunset.
The sun actually sets behind the trees but it was still a beautiful night out. These were taken from the end of the fishing pier looking towards the marina.
The sun was going down on the sailboats.
We recently had a yellow crowned night heron on our dock. He didn’t fly away when I went out to take his picture. I didn’t get too close to the dock though.
Of course, the mallard came cruising up to see if I had a handout.
A red bellied woodpecker has been a regular in our backyard.
I saw this squirrel resting in our tree. When I got closer he didn’t move. I was beginning to wonder if he was still alive. I got pretty close and he turned and looked at me. I left him alone and after a while, he got up and left.
These bloom all year here.
Another wasp nest in the palm tree.
I saw this weird glow outside right before dark and ran outside to take pictures of the clouds. The rain had stopped and the sun was trying to peak through before going down.
The mallards always show up when you are on the dock. Even in the dark.
A few things from the backyard recently.
Ibis on our dock. Taken through the bedroom window.
A great blue heron hanging out in our neighbor’s yard.
A little blue heron in our other neighbor’s yard.
The osprey on our neighbor’s sailboat mast. It was a windy day and he was have trouble staying up on that high mast.
Later I saw him on our neighbor’s palm tree. Taken through the bedroom window.
Various things in the backyard.
Later the osprey was back on the sailboat right before sunset.
Just a few things from the yard on a recent weekend.
A snowy egret flyby.
Osprey on the light post.
Cormorant on the light post.
A great blue heron on the light post.
I saw two birds that were hooked on fishing lines. Both were pulled up and released. The top one was a cormorant with line wrapped around his foot. The 2nd was a snowy egret that got a hook caught in his feathers. Everyone helped out and both had the lines taken off and released. The birds were very calm while the people were taking the lines off.
View from the beach.
The sun was going down on the dolphins and birds.
A beautiful sunset walk at Fort Desoto.
After our big Christmas lunch and watching a movie on the couch, we decided to go to Fort Desoto for a Christmas sunset. The fishing pier was packed with people fishing and the dog beach was packed with doggies. It was a beautiful late afternoon and everyone was out. There weren’t a lot of birds around but the pelicans were actively diving for fish so I started practicing my pelican fly-bys. The sun was in the right spot and the pelicans were cruising near the pier. I took a ton of pictures trying to get the pelicans right as they dove into the water for fish. More on those later.