Young old souls

Wood storks are born looking like old souls. These babies are only a few months old and already look like an old man. I stopped by the bird rookery in north Tampa in mid-April and the little island in the middle of the small lake was full of older babies. Wood storks were the predominant birds with a few great egret and cattle egrets nesting as well.

This rookery is so busy that the families were all on top of each other.

Triplets were posing for me.

Parents were back and forth bringing in food and more padding for the nests.

I think these were the youngest ones there. All still fuzzy and white.

Wood stork babies seem to be more quiet than great egret babies. There wasn’t as much clacking going on.Since the island is in the middle of the lake, these were all taken with my 300mm lens and cropped up.

Linking to Wednesday Around the World.

Missed the moon but caught a sunset

From my driveway in late January. Saw this when I got home and thought it would be cool to try and get the moon coming up over Tampa the next night.

Tampa across the bridge. No moon coming up so I headed into Tampa.

I was hoping to get a shot of the big super blue blood moon rising above the Tampa skyline in late January so I brought my camera and headed over to a tall parking garage just off the bridge after work. On the moon side there was a cloud bank so i wasn’t going to get a shot of the moon just over the city.

I turned around and walked over to the other side of the parking garage and saw the above. A plane coming in for a landing near the Tampa airport just as the sun was going down. I stood for a while watching the planes come in. It was a beautiful cool night.

Sun’s all gone. Sometimes when life gives you lemons, turn around.

SkyWatch Friday

A walk around Davis Islands yacht basin

So many different things to see around the tip of Davis Islands where the small airport and yacht basin ends the island.  From tiny boats, really big boats and tug boats the variety can keep you busy watching the sights all morning.

In one corner of the island, there’s a small dog beach next to the private airport. There wasn’t many dogs on the beach early one recent Saturday morning. I think it was just too hot. Even the water was warm.

I think this is my favorite. This sailboat had a handmade boat lift for it’s own rowboat.

A hot Saturday morning in late July.

SkyWatch Friday

Being a tourist in your own hometown.

dsc_7916 dsc_7921

The view of Harbour Island from Riverwalk.  We sat outside and had lunch nearby.

dsc_7929

dsc_7925

Vultures on top of the Arena where the Lightning hockey team plays.

dsc_7934

A cruise ship docked nearby.

dsc_7935

A view of Tampa from Riverwalk.

dsc_7941

dsc_7948

dsc_7970

dsc_8035

dsc_8040

dsc_8024

Looking across the water at Harbour Island, Davis Island and south Tampa, it was a busy Sunday afternoon. The weather had finally cooled off and everyone was out having fun.

dsc_7954

Tampa General Hospital across the water.

dsc_7946

One of the most popular dogs of the afternoon.  I’m not sure what kind of dog this is but he looked bigger than a great dane.  He was very well-behaved and everyone was taking his picture.

The weekend before Thanksgiving was perfect. High of 65 degrees. We headed out to have lunch outside and then walked the Riverwalk path in downtown Tampa. The walking path is wide and runs from the port of Tampa to the museum across from the University of Tampa. There are stores, restaurants and lots of activities along the way. It was packed with people, tourist visiting, locals walking their dogs, jogging, biking and getting on boats. If you want to be outside in a downtown area, this is the place to be.

SkyWatch Friday

Summer nights in Tampa

IMG_5364 IMG_5366 IMG_5387 IMG_5428

I peaked out the window and saw some dark clouds moving in. I grabbed my phone and ran out to the backyard.  I kept hearing crashing coming from the front yard so I ran around to the front and got the shot of the lightning. The night storms have been crazy lately in the beginning of August.

IMG_5584

IMG_5589

The next night I drove home in pouring rain and by the time I got home the sky looked like the above in the backyard.

IMG_5853

IMG_5854

On the way home from work I stopped at a parking deck right off the bridge to take the above.  Looking towards downtown Tampa, it was beautiful blue skies. When I turned around, the big storm was moving across the bay. I had just driven through that.

All of the above were taking with my phone.

SkyWatch Friday

“Don’t poke my eye out”

DSC_2190 DSC_2201 DSC_2205 DSC_2216 DSC_2360 DSC_2366 DSC_2369 DSC_2376 DSC_2398 DSC_2405 DSC_2411

More pictures from my stop at the bird rookery in north Tampa back in June. These are all great egrets. Most of the baby egrets were already grown up and almost as big as the adults. They were still being fed by their parents and most were probably flying soon after I took these pictures. The babies, even though they look fully grown, still have a little bit of fuzz on the top of their heads. They are very aggressive when the parents fly in to feed them. I feel bad for them having to regurgitate fish up to feed to the screaming kids who look like they are trying to attack them.