Whooooo … da thunk it?

Today, on my 7th trip this year to Riverbend Park in Jupiter Florida, I finally spotted a Barred Owl!!!  I met Cheryl …  aka the Owl Whisperer at around 7:30 and off we went on our bikes.  The woods were generally still very,very quiet with just the normal Jays and Cardinals calling.  There was some patchy ground fog that lent a wonderful feel to the place this morning.

Barred Owl ... is the 169th bird species I've photographed in Palm Beach County Florida this year!

The first cool thing we ran into this morning was a large flock of Cedar Waxwings busily and I mean really actively feeding on ripe berries.  They were moving about so fast I didn’t get any useable pictures. 

Now on to the real highlight of the morning … the Owls. Cheryl actually heard this Momma Owl doing its hiss call before we ever found her.  We finally found her hiding in a Cabbage Palm Tree. 

Barred Owlet ... I'll say it for you awwwwwwwwwww!!

Two days ago my friends Linda and Ruth were in the park and had photographed an Owl hiding way up in a Cypress Tree.  When I saw the pictures I was pretty certain it was not an adult Owl.  While I was busy taking pictures of the adult Cheryl managed to find a baby Owl.  I quickly went to where she was and when she was trying to get me on the baby I noticed a second one.  This little one was very curious and kept staring down at us … good thing he isn’t scared of heights because he has to be 30-40 feet up!!!

The quickly growing Sandhill Crane Colt

After tearing ourselves away from the Owls, not an easy thing to do, we went in search of the Sandhill Crane family.  We managed to find them and it really looks like the Colt is growing fast.

Black-crowned Night Heron

We heard some strange calls coming from where the Wood Ducks often are and finally figured out that it was a Limpkin calling.  While investigating I managed this shot of this Black-crowned Night Heron.  I really liked the lighting and the background on this one.

Swallowtail Kite ... one of the chasers!

On our way out three Swallowtail Kites were chasing each other around.  In one of the pictures I took one of them had a honeycomb in its talons.  It was eating while on the wing and I think the others were chasing it in hopes it would drop its tasty treat!

I had a lovely three hours at Riverbend this morning.  I can’t thank Cheryl enough for getting me # 169!  Now all I have to do is get my Sweetheart Terri up there to see these babies because they are just over the top cute!!!

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About sheriffsmith

I have worked for the Broward County Sheriff's Office the last 13 years and spend most of my free time birdwatching / naturewatching and photographing the birds and nature that I encounter. I believe God has blessed us with a world that is so absolutely fascinating and wonderful and I'm doing my best to discover and show others all that he has provided us with in nature.
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6 Responses to Whooooo … da thunk it?

  1. jmgoyder says:

    Fantastic photos!

  2. newbiebird says:

    Wow… What a great sighting and wonderful pictures, too! I will have to include Riverbend Park in one of our future birding trips.

  3. Julie Gomez says:

    Congratulations on the barred owl, and owlets–way to go!

  4. Deb Platt says:

    I enjoyed all the photos, but especially the baby owl and the heron. I had no idea that baby cranes were “colts”.

  5. mike585 says:

    Nice owls, Tom.

  6. I’ll say it again, awwwwwwww! So cute, the baby crane and owl. Love the heron photo, wonderful!

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