The views from both the bay and gulf piers. In the bottom picture, they are putting in a new utility tower that sits off the fishing pier. It’s weird to see the men tied off on top of that platform. I guess they didn’t want to risk a big splash in the water. It’s actually much higher up than it looks from the pier. They will eventually add the top part and the birds will be able to nest and hang out on it since the old one broke off years ago.
Color on the dunes.
Birds around the pier.
Several dolphins were coming up insanely close to the pier. They would pop right up along the pier as I was looking down so I could only fit in half of their bodies. There were at least 2 with one of them having a zig zag pattern near the blow hole.
A beautiful morning at Fort Desoto out on the beach.
Watching all of the big boats go by, wondering about that life at sea. I recently started following a guy who pilots the big boats in and out of Tampa bay on Instagram. It’s cool to see his pictures from the boat. I bet he has some great stories to tell. You can find him at Tampabaypilot.
It’s always fun to see the dolphins swimming around the fishing pier and the little terns diving for fish.
The cactus all over the park are blooming.
Brett and I spent a Sunday morning in April just hanging out on the beach. With work, chores and family we don’t get there as much as we use to.
A few weeks after my trip to Chesnut Park in the rain after work, I headed back for another walk on a Saturday morning. The babies are usually hiding in the woods on Saturday mornings since the park is pretty busy. I was lucky to see the above hanging close to mom and wandering around near the parking area in the back of the park. There was a male close by as well. In that last picture, the little one turned to look at me as if to say “What’s that furry thing with an acorn, Lady?”
Ants were hanging out on the flowers.
A young red shoulder hawk was hunting near my car.
He gave me a glance and then went back to checking out the water for food.
Terns and a gull knee-deep in the water.
Taking a bath.
Taken with my wide-angle lens. The birds were lined up on the beach in front of the Sunshine Skyway bridge.
Farther back, the bridge off in the distance.
Taken from in the water, the sky looks bluer here than the picture above.
This was a panorama taken with my phone. You can just barely see the bridge in the distance. This is the view from the East Beach turnaround.
I headed out to Fort Desoto in late September. It was a beautiful morning. Luckily I had my wide-angle lens in the car because there wasn’t a lot of birds around. The clouds were beautiful against the blue sky and the rain held out until much later in the afternoon. By then I was napping on the couch.
A marbled godwit trying to sleep in the middle of dowitchers.
A lost oystercatcher. “Excuse me, can someone tell me where the restroom is?”
A few willets mixed in.
Giving me the eye.
A shorebird convention.
“Can you please keep your peeping down? Us oystercatchers are trying to sleep.”
A young laughing gull.
A “loud as usual” laughing gull.
Dowitchers busy looking for breakfast.
Taking a break from the crowd.
I think this is a Forester’s tern in non-breeding colors. Could also be a common tern.
Shorebirds are starting to move through the area. For the past month, there’s been almost no birds at the north beach marsh at Fort Desoto. When I went in late July, the marsh area was starting to fill up with birds. Mostly dowitchers, willets and marbled godwits. It was the usual hot sunny perfect morning on the beach.
A horrible picture of my first sighting of a yellow-headed blackbird. Birders had been posting about seeing this fairly rare bird here in a neighbor almost an hour from my house for a few weeks. He had only been sighted late in the day so I finally headed out there on a recent Sunday afternoon while hubby was watching football. I looked around for an hour and didn’t see him so I left and ran over to Medard Park which is close by for a quick walk over the boardwalk. I headed back to the pond to look for the rare bird again and after looking for almost 2 hours, he showed up right before dark. And, he was right in the middle of a pond so this is extremely cropped.
On my way into Medard Park, I see a few vultures eating an armadillo.
I think this is a caspian tern, just coming out of the water.
This anhinga was catching bait fish right below the boardwalk. Since I had my fixed lens I couldn’t zoom in and this was all I got of her. The fish looks nice and tasty!
Due to the overabundance of apple snails, the park is full of limpkins.
Great blue heron shaking off some water.
This alligator was laying in the pond in the neighborhood where I saw the yellow-headed blackbird. How’d you like to walk your dog around that thing? Yes, people were out walking their dogs around the pond while I was there.
So this is what I do when Hubby is watching football (or playing golf). Drive around town looking for birds. It was too nice an afternoon to be indoors doing chores (which is what I should have been doing). The chores usually wait until a weeknight after work when it’s dark anyway.