The neighborhood pond





I stopped by a neighborhood pond to see what was floating around in it. I parked my car and got out and saw two sandhill cranes in someone’s yard. Just relaxing under a tree. They stayed there while I was walking around the lake. When I got back to my car, they were walking around in the street.


Nothing too exciting in the pond. A great blue heron was hiding in the reeds.



My favorite muhly grass was pink and the red berries were out.



A red bellied cooter and a soft shell turtle were basking in the sun.

Not much floating in the pond right now. Hopefully, some winter ducks will show up.

Our World Tuesday Graphicimage-in-ing

Two baby gallinule families!


I get to the lake, park and walk out on the sidewalk. I’m thinking “I may not be able to find that purple gallinule family in this big pond. As I’m standing there thinking that, a purple gallinule flies right in front.


A little black fuzz ball comes running to him. Well, I found them. But, they were far out in the middle of the pond so all of these are extremely cropped. This little one was the youngest of the three babies in this family.


This one must be the oldest baby, skipping over to catch up with  mom.


This one looked like the middle baby. They were at the “Getting Brave” stage since all three were running all over the place nowhere near the parents.


Mom didn’t stay long. She checked on the kids and left. I’m assuming she’s out looking for food.


The middle one was out cruising for food himself.



I walked a little bit further down the sidewalk and I hear this quiet “peep, peep” coming from under the leaves.  Out pops a tiny baby, only a few days old.


Then I see the parent come over to the baby.


Such a tiny little thing. An only child.

There were two purple gallinule families at the neighborhood lake. I had heard about the one family with three older kids so it was fun to see the little baby as well. So far all three of the older ones are doing well. They have a lot to look out for. There are lots of hawks that cruise this lake and the lake is full of alligators. Hopefully, both families can avoid being lunch and grow up to be big beautiful purple gallinules.

A walk around a lake in the boonies.


Another summer black bellied whistling duck sighting.  I snapped this from far away. As I walked down the sidewalk they took off.


A juvenile moorhen, probably 2-3 months old.


I’m seeing green herons everywhere this summer.


Another juvenile moorhen with his parent close by.


After walking around the main lake, I walked over to a small path with a gazebo at the back lake. Most of the lake is surrounded by houses but there is a tiny park along one side. Zooming in across the lake, I could see this sandhill crane couple taking a nap. It would be really cool to have them sleeping in my backyard.


The only shot of baby black bellied whistling ducks ever and it was a bad one. I could see them across the lake but I was not about to walk past the “No Trespassing” sign, even for whistler babies. This was taken directly into the sun and extremely cropped up. They looked so cute with those stripes on their bodies. Most baby ducks all look like mallards but these really looked different.


Nice view from someone’s backyard.

Way out in the boonies (or at least 40 minutes from my house so I call it the boonies) is a big neighborhood that has several lakes right in the middle. Yes, some call this the suburbs. The main lake has an amazing amount of wildlife. The lake has a sidewalk and the houses are across the street. There’s a small wooded park close by filled with woodpeckers. I stopped by early one Saturday morning in late July and there were lots of joggers and dog walkers already out. I didn’t stay long since the sun was out and there was no breeze. I did manage to get some shots of some baby purple gallinules which I’ll post later.

Linking up to Saturday’s Critters

A tale of two lakes


I caught this squirrel eating right next to the hummingbird feeder.


The only decent shot I got. I forgot to bring my tripod and even though I had my monopod, the light was awful. The feeder was in the shade so I wasn’t able to get a good picture of the hummer hovering over the feeder.


Bug on a ball. Lettuce Lake Park in north Tampa was quiet on a Saturday morning in late June. So I did what any respectable birder would do. I left and went somewhere else.


Twin Lakes is not a park. Just a lake at the entrance to a subdivision in what I call is the boonies. This subdivision should win a prize for one of the top birding neighborhood spots in Tampa. Constant traffic, dog walkers and joggers going around this little lake. The first thing I spotted was a baby moorhen.


A mom and younger baby was close by.


The baby was getting a bite from Mom. It’s funny to see his little wings go so fast when he was getting his food.


The above juvenile grackle was chasing after his parent for food.


I had heard there were baby purple gallinules at the lake. I first saw the adults coming out of the leaves right in the middle of the pond.


Then I saw three tiny black dots. These are highly cropped taken with my 300mm lens.


The parents stayed close to the babies.


Walking around, the parent must have been looking for food.


The baby is so tiny. He could only be a few days old. There must have been another family with older babies because I had read about them over a week earlier.


I don’t know what that was she had in her mouth but it didn’t look like food.

Not too bad for a walk around two different parks. Even though it’s summer and hot and not many birds around, there’s still a lot to see out there.

Camera Critters