It was a stagnant morning in late July. Not even a slight breeze or ripple on the water. I stopped at the pier at Weaver Park to see if I could spot any dolphins but the tide was so low that they would be far out anyway so I didn’t stay long. It was too hot to be out so after my quick walk I headed home.
A few days later it was cloudy when I went out for a walk at the Dunedin marina. There was at least a breeze and a chance of rain.
The tide was low and the water was clear around the pier and I noticed someone must have dumped some fish bones in the water. I’ve never seen this before. The tiny bait fish were picking the bones clean.
A little farther down the pier I could see coral growing on the oyster beds.
The usual great egret was there, trying to catch some tiny fish.
I had heard there were some fun eclectic mailboxes on a few of the streets just off Main street so I took some back roads to get home.
These are just a small sample of some of the ones I saw. All snapped with my phone.
When I got almost home I could see some rain clouds out in the bay. I took a detour and stopped at the Oldsmar pier hoping to see some rain headed our way. I started to walk out on the pier and heard some thunder so I ducked under a picnic shelter and caught the above lightning across the bay. We did get a short storm at home but we are still in severe drought conditions. Through September this is the driest year on record for Pinellas county.
One last look at the purple martins at the Dunedin marina. After this trip in late May they have left the condo. The babies were flying around the marina but still landing back on the nest house to be fed. Next year I’ll have to remember to stop by here earlier before the babies are fully grown.
House sparrows were taking a dirt bath below the purple martin nest box.
After walking around the marina I left and stopped at the nearby long fishing pier at Weaver Park. Looking north I could see the drawbridge up at the causeway bridge. This was a common sight back in the “old days” along the intercoastal waterway. Now as older bridges are being replaced, they build them up high so a drawbridge isn’t necessary anymore. This is one of the last remaining drawbridges in the area.
A few guys were fishing at the end of the pier and this great egret flew in looking for a handout.
After hanging around the fishermen for a while, he must have gotten tired of waiting for a handout and started getting his own snacks.. He was leaning over the floating dock and catching the bugs on the side of the dock to eat. Yum!
A least tern takes a break from diving into the water for his fish.
Earlier that morning when I was walking around the marina, some of the houses close by had these cactus vines growing in their yards. These cactus, night blooming cereas, only bloom at night but I was able to catch a few closing up early that morning. I’ve heard they are really beautiful and smell great when they are in full bloom but I would need to be here around midnight for that.
I was meeting a friend for lunch on the beach in January and threw my camera in the car to make a few stops on the way home. Since I was close by, my first stop was at the Seaside Seabird Sanctuary. It’s now run by a group of volunteers and they rescue and rehabilitate injured birds.
The sanctuary is shaded by overgrown mangrove trees and wild birds nest high up in them this time of year. Great egrets were working on fixing up their nests.
I could just barely make out baby great blue herons through all of the sticks and leaves. This nest had 2 babies and they were already growing up.
One of the first baby night herons of the season. They usually nest a little later but these guys were already almost as big as their parents.
A pretty pelican face.
This sandhill crane is one of the residents. You can see he’s missing his bottom beak. He’s well fed here.
Much farther north on the water, I stopped back by Weaver Park again. I always see parakeets here. They aren’t hard to miss, screaming so loud all of the time. Looks like they’ll be nesting soon.
The pier was pretty quiet. Mostly terns and gulls. I was hoping to catch the opsrey diving for fish but there wasn’t any here this afternoon.
It was a beautiful cool morning when I went out for a walk at the Dunedin marina. You could still see the blue sky through the blanket of clouds.
The clouds made a great reflection on the water.
Reflections in the marina.
I stopped at close by Weaver Park to walk on the fishing pier on the way home. The sun was trying to come out. I realize now I miss those cold mornings. Now that it’s warmed up the park and marina are packed with people. Even early on a weekday morning, parking is a challage now.