Fort Desoto in mid-May

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Lots of black bellied plovers on the beach.

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Tiny Wilson’s plover.

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Gimpy, one of the resident oystercatchers was watching me as looked for food.

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A pretty red breasted merganser coming up for air.

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I think this is a white eyed vireo but I can’t tell for sure from this shot.

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The only Cape May warbler I saw this spring.

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Mom is all alone now that her kids have gone off to “college”. She’s getting some much-needed rest after raising two hungry owlets.

 

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Crazy wild parrots flying around near the beach.

Some left over shots from a trip to Fort Desoto beach in mid-May.

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Same ole birds at Fort Desoto

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Wilson’s plover

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Sanderling

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Oystercatcher couple

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Bye, bye

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Grumpy snowy egret on a pile of seaweed.

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Great egret goes cruising by.

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“Hey, bring back that crab.”

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“Things are looking up.”

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“Sushi for lunch.”

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Loggerhead shrike on a wire.

Working on my tan at Fort Desoto beach.

Linking to Saturday’s Critters

Shorebirds at Fort Desoto

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Dowitchers taking a nap.

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Wilson’s plover not much taller than the grass.

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The sandwich terns are back on the beach for a while.

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Juvenile sandwich tern.

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Semipalmated plover.

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Dowitcher cruising by.

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Gotta itch.

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He’s so cute!

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Laughing gull missing a foot.

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Willet trying to be cute.

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A very young black skimmer taking a nap.

Same ole thing on the beach in late August.

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Also, check out more birds at Paying Ready Attention for 

Scenes from a beach on Memorial Day weekend – Skywatch Friday

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A lone red knot on the beach.

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And then there were two.

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As I was sitting on the sand shooting the red knot, I looked over and saw this Wilson’s plover watching me.

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He grabs a small crab and was showing it off before he gulped it down.

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He cruised by me while keeping an eye on me.

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The park rangers having a meeting in the roped off bird sanctuary area. Since this was the Saturday morning before Memorial Day, they had a busy weekend ahead of them. Sometimes I think they must have a cool job but it must be hard being out in that heat all day not to mention every holiday. Dealing with drunk people (yes, no alcohol is allowed in the park but duh, people bring it anyway). I once heard a man who was slurring his words argue with a ranger over having his dog on the main beach where there are clear signs that say no dogs  on this beach. There is a separate beach for pets. The guy would not leave with his dog. If I was the ranger I would have wanted to taser the guy. The rangers at this park work hard!

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Great blue heron posing on a light post on the fishing pier.

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Yellow eyeballs on a snowy egret.

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A group of people kayaking around the fishing pier.

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Rush hour traffic in the shipping lanes.

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The dolphins were out in full force.

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Looking back from the end of the fishing pier.

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Zoomed in on a ship going by.

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A tourist had a nice stash of shells she was collecting. It’s not usual to find a big one like this on the beach. She was digging around out in the water near the fishing pier.

You know it’s going to be a packed park on a holiday weekend. I got there early Saturday morning and was home by lunch time. I could have stayed later and taken pictures of all the people packed in on the beaches but that would only make me crazy. It was nice to get out on a sunny morning and walk the beach and fishing pier before the crowds. After a long nap at home, I was ready to do chores.

Check out more sky pictures at Skywatch Friday

Teeny tiny birds on the beach

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Look at all that jewelry the piping plover has on.

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They are so tiny.

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This one only has one anklet on. He looks sleepy. It was early in the morning.

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This one has no jewelry on.

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This one is a Wilson’s plover.

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A sanderling stretching after a morning nap.

It was a quiet morning at Fort Desoto in early September. Not much on the beach but I was excited to see several piping plovers. We don’t see them here often. They must be migrating through. It was a 4 plover morning: Wilson’s, piping, semiplamated and black bellied. Now if only I had seen a snowy. I haven’t seen one there in years.

Shorebirds on the beach

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A black bellied plover with an actual black belly. In early May there were a few with the breeding black belly at Fort Desoto. The weird thing is that I’ve been seeing a lot of them standing on the busy bridge that I drove over to get home from work going into Tampa. How do I have time to notice the little shorebirds on the bridge you say? It’s because I’m usually sitting in traffic on the bridge going nowhere from 0 to 5 miles an hour.

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Dunlin in breeding feathers. I don’t see these guys very often.

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It’s common to see a Wilson’s plover on the beach.

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Mostly willets with a ruddy turnstone in the middle. They were trying to sleep.

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A group of black skimmers were sleeping on the sliver of beach in between the lagoon and gulf. You think “Oh, what a beautiful place for a nap.” But, in another hour or two every inch of this spot will be filled with beach chairs and kids running around.

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This is now a common sight on the beach.

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I thought this was a cute couple so I snapped the picture quickly. Later, when I cropped it up I noted he was missing a foot.

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I love to watch the big ships go by. Wondering where they are going and glad I’m not on it because I know I’d be so seasick out there once they hit the big ocean. This one was pretty far out in the gulf.

The usual stuff on a beautiful Saturday morning at Fort Desoto. Now that spring migration is over I’ll be hitting the beaches more. Looking for shorebirds and getting the sea breeze.

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