It’s not often you can get this up close with an eagle. This one was missing part of his wing and was spending his time at the Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park. I caught him taking a bath.
Pelicans were hanging out in their big open space. Some were starting to nest.
Other birds were just hanging out and preening when I was there in mid-November.
I caught these two wild night herons fighting over nesting space over the roof of an exhibit.
You can also get close to the spoonbills. And since the flamingos were right behind you, you wouldn’t have to look at them and think they were flamingos.
Summer blooms at the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo in late July.
This spider was busy with her crazy web.
Chewing on leaves.
A wood stork guarding the bridge. He didn’t even move when I walked by.
Almost grown baby wood ducks swimming under the bridge.
There were two white pelicans and one brown pelican floating in Crescent Lake near downtown St. Pete recently. The white ones were feeding close to the edge of the lake.
You can always find wood storks here.
Other usual critters include wintering ring billed ducks, lots of green herons, a cute mallard with a feather hat and plenty of turtles. One thing I’ve never seen here is alligators. I’m sure they are there under the water. I’ve only ever been early in the morning so they may be on the bank sunning themselves late in the afternoon.
This ring billed gull would have preferred a handout.
Eagle sightings along the trail at Circle B Bar Reserve.
Out in the marsh, a lone sandhill crane was among the wood storks. At first he was feeding but then he stopped and started calling across the marsh.
He then took off, flying right in front of me.
Along the trail.
Taken with my 300mm lens, this big guy was napping out in the water.
Many of the birds were still sitting on eggs at the bird rookery at Gatorland in Orlando in mid-May.
Some were still flirting.
Lots of different wild birds hanging out at the park including the great egret above that stole a hot dog from an alligator. You can feed the alligators here but half of the time the birds get the food quicker.
The youngest baby birds at the rookery that morning. The baby snowy egrets were probably only a few days old.
The gators were getting frisky.
Seeing a baby gator up close.
This guy was taking a break before the crowds were on the boardwalk.
The Flamingo Gardens near Ft. Lauderdale takes in a lot of permanently injured animals to live their lives out here. As I was walking around the aviary this pelican came right up to me as if to say “Come hang out with me.”. It looked like he had an injured wing.
A barred owl with a missing eye.
A few other birds in the aviary.
The white pelicans had very distinctive faces.
The pelicans were nesting and swimming around.
A pretty cattle egret posing for me.
All taken in the permanent injured aviary.
I’ve been recently posting a lot of older pictures on Instagram. If you are over there you can find me at @dinaj1.
Northern shovelers aren’t extremely rare in the Tampa bay area but I haven’t seen any in a long time. There were 2 couples close the edge of the water at Largo Nature Preserve in late January and they didn’t seem to mind me watching them. They look a lot like mallards but have that goofy big square bill.
A snowy egret was looking for food.
A wood stork was taking a break.
A cattle egret with a bright orange bill.
Two ring billed ducks.
Linking to My Corner of the World.
Every other Sunday, Brett and I visit his aunt at the nursing home in St. Pete. The weather has been so nice that we spend the time with her hanging out at the duck pond in the parking lot. On a recent Sunday, a little lady came over and fed the ducks while we were there. It looked like seed and cracked corn. All of the birds and ducks came in close and we sat and watched them having their snack.
It was fun watching the duck drama going on.
Later, we moved to another bench and this wood stork walked right up to us. He was hoping we had something to feed him. He watched us for a few minutes and then left. I only had my phone with me so all of the above were taken with that.
Linking to My Corner of the World.
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.