Big “Bigby” Week!

The birding has been great lately and I apologize for the lack of blogging.  I have seen and photographed quite a few nice birds this past week and a half and thought I’d share a few.
Roseate Spoonbill ... There must have been 100's of these guys flying around STA 1E.

Roseate Spoonbill … There must have been 100’s of these guys flying around STA 1E.

When I last left you I was preparing for a marathon bike ride out to Stormwater Treatment Area 1 East (STA 1E).  I left the house right at 5:30 AM and managed the 27 mile ride in just under 2 hours.  It was a little unnerving riding in the dark along the sidewalk that parallels State Rd 441 as my headlamp for the bike only throws a beam about 10 ft in front of the bike and it was new territory for me.  I made it safe and sound and arrived just after the sun had come up.
Lesser Yellowlegs ... Perfect early morning light on this small group.

Lesser Yellowlegs … Perfect early morning light on this small group.

The birding at STA 1E was fabulous as always and I saw 70 species in the 4 hours or so I was there.  One thing about all the STA’s in Florida is the fact that there is hunting allowed and the birds are quite people shy (rightfully so) thus making great photography very difficult due to distance factors.
American Avocet ... One of the species I'm not likely to see unless I take a 100 mile road trip this Fall.

American Avocet … One of the species I’m not likely to see unless I take a 100 mile road trip this Fall.

Gadwell ... This was the typical distance for most species ... close enough for ID shots but not close enough for great detail.

Gadwell … This was the typical distance for most species … close enough for ID shots but not close enough for great detail.

I picked up quite a few nice birds for my Bigby that I probably won’t see any where else this year including White Pelicans, American Avocet, Gadwell, Ruddy Duck and Gull-billed Terns.  I saw both Yellowlegs and some Dowitchers which I hope to see at GC if the water levels ever go down but was still happy to pick them up.

Caspian Tern

Caspian Tern

Forster's Tern

Forster’s Tern

I road around the impoundments for another 8 miles or so and eventually ended the day riding about 64 miles for the round trip.  The trip back was pretty tough as it was 90% into a 10-15 mph headwind.  My legs were a little achy by the time I finished and after 1 day of rest I was back in the gym for a 4 mile run!
Northern Flicker

Northern Flicker

Savannah Sparrow

Savannah Sparrow

I visited Wellington Environmental Preserve on the way back and picked up Northern Pintail and an unexpected Northern Flicker which was a first for me at this park.  I was a little disappointed that I missed Eastern Meadowlark here as it is usually quite easy … maybe next time.

Eastern Whip-poor-will ... My good friend Linda found this wonderful bird and I couldn't thank her enough!!!

Eastern Whip-poor-will … My good friend Linda found this wonderful bird and I couldn’t thank her enough!!!

Solitary Sandpiper

Solitary Sandpiper

The best bird of the week by far came via my regular Green Cay birding buddy Linda Fell.  On Thursday she discovered a Whip-poor-will and fortunately for me and many others it has stuck around for 3 days now.  What a fantastic find.  It was a new Florida and County bird for me and Linda’s 193rd species seen at Green Cay.

Today at Green Cay I picked up another new species for the year.  The water level has gone down just a little in the last week due to no rain and I recorded the first of what will be many Solitary Sandpipers!

Thanks so much for putting up with all my delayed posts!!!

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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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