First Couple of Weeks Wrapped Up

I spent the last five or six days before heading on my North Florida adventure at Snook Island, Boynton Beach Inlet, STA 1 East, Wakodahatchee Wetlands and Green Cay.   Lots of good birding with a few pretty nice surprises.

(Click on the picture for a larger size)

Common Loon ... This guy was visable for like 10 seconds and then he dove ... never to be seen again.

Common Loon … This guy was visable for like 10 seconds and then he dove … never to be seen again.

Bonaparte's Gull ... One of the more unuasual Gulls we sometimes get at the Inlet.

Bonaparte’s Gull … One of the more unusual Gulls we sometimes get at the Inlet.

On the 8th I visited both Snook Island and Boynton Beach Inlet.  The weather was not very conducive to birding with heavy clouds and quite a bit of wind.  I did manage to pick up the above Loon and also 5 species of Gull including a Bonaparte’s Gull that landed on the North jetty.  Just like the Loon it was a very brief appearance but sufficient for a picture or two.  I managed to get much better pictures of all the species photographed that day … coming soon with my North Florida commentary.

Painted Bunting ... Green Cay on 1-9-15

Painted Bunting … Green Cay on 1-9-15

Purple Swamphen ... 1-9-15 at Green Cay Wetlands

Purple Swamphen … 1-9-15 at Green Cay Wetlands

The 9th was spent at Green Cay Wetlands trying to photograph some of the species I missed so far.  It is funny that some of the species I see like 90% of the time I’ll miss for 3-4 visits when I want to photograph them!

Northern Shoveler ... She flew in while I was waiting for the Yellow-headed Blackbird and took a bath ... Wakodahatchee Wetlands 1-10-15

Northern Shoveler … She flew in while I was waiting for the Yellow-headed Blackbird and took a bath … Wakodahatchee Wetlands 1-10-15

I visited Wakodahatchee Wetlands on the 10th seeing 52 species and enjoying a beautiful cool, sunny January day in South Florida.

Feeding Frenzy at Storm Water Treatment Area 1 East ... This is only about a thrid of the entire group but all I could fit into the lens I was using.

Feeding Frenzy at Storm Water Treatment Area 1 East … This is only about a third of the entire group but all I could fit into the lens I was using.

I took the 11th off and then took a nice 12 mile bike ride around STA 1 East on the 12th.  I had planned to head up North that day but the forecast was for terrible weather up North so I postponed it for a couple of days since I had the whole week off.

Gull-billed Tern ... STA 1 East on the 12th of January

Gull-billed Tern … STA 1 East on the 12th of January

I’m really glad I delayed as I was able to pick up a few nice species that I wouldn’t see the rest of the month including Gull-billed Tern and Stilt Sandpipers.  I saw 56 species and also got in a good bike ride!

Ring-billed Gull ... Green Cay Wetlands 1-13-15

Ring-billed Gull … Green Cay Wetlands 1-13-15

My last day before I ventured North I went to GC and Wako and while I didn’t pick up anything super exciting Cheryl had come down for the day so Linda, Richard, Cheryl and I had a wonderful 3-4 hours of birding together.  I did like the picture of the young Ring-billed Gull I managed at Green Cay.  I usually don’t like back-lit subjects but I thought this one was pretty cool.

Thank you all so much for visiting and my next few posts will be my wonderful trip to Northern Florida.  As always God Bless.

Posted in Birds, General, Places | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

More First Week Pictures

On the 5th of January Carl Edwards, Linda Fell and I drove down to the Deering Estates in Miami hoping to see the Key West Quail Dove that was being reported for a week or so there.  We arrived at 7 and had to wait in the parking lot until 7:30 while everyone else showed up as we had to walk in as a group.  The bird had already been staked out by two other birders and just as we entered the area where it was, we heard the one thing birders never, ever want to hear … “You should have been here 5 minutes ago!” From what we were told a Pileated Woodpecker had come in and scared it off only minutes before we got there.  We watched and looked and waited for 4 hours with no sightings by anyone in our group of 30 or so … a little disappointing but it was still a nice outing with some good friends.

(Clicking on any picture makes it bigger and sharper)

Peregrine Falcon ... I saw more of these guys in January than I've seen in the last 3-4 years combined...   Taken 1-6-15 at Wellington Wetlands

Peregrine Falcon … I saw more of these guys in January than I’ve seen in the last 3-4 years combined… Taken 1-6-15 at Wellington Wetlands

The next day the 6th I spent the morning riding around Wellington Wetlands and Peaceful Waters Preserve in Wellington. Both places were very birdie and as you can see from the pic above beautifully sunny!

Ruddy Duck ... He has been hanging out for a couple of months now.

Ruddy Duck … He has been hanging out for a couple of months now… Taken 1-6-15 at Peaceful Water’s

One nice thing about Peaceful Waters is the holding ponds on the North end of the property.  It is a little tough to get good looks at them due to all the plantings but there are usually some shorebirds depending on the water levels.  I had this really nice Greater Yellowlegs that I snuck up on … also because of the extensive plantings!!

Greater Yellowlegs ... Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs are identical in looks but when you see them next to each other it is amazing how much larger the greater is.  I've seen so many of both I feel comfortabe ID'ing them just with a quick look.

Greater Yellowlegs … Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs are identical in looks but when you see them next to each other it is amazing how much larger the Greater is. I’ve seen so many of both I feel comfortable ID’ing them just with a quick look … Taken at Peaceful Waters 1-6-15

On the 7th I got up early and headed up to Riverbend in Jupiter.  My goal was to photograph Wild Turkey’s and Pileated Woodpeckers along with whatever else was available.  I saw 52 species but was quite shocked and a little disappointed that there were no Turkeys around.  This has been an almost 100% sure spot for that species, often with a dozen or more present but they seemed to have moved on or into a part of the park that is not open to the public.

Pileated Woodpecker ... I see these guys at Loxahatchee NWR but find they are much easier to photograph at Riverbend.

Pileated Woodpecker … I see these guys at Loxahatchee NWR but find they are much easier to photograph at Riverbend … Taken at Riverbend Park 1-7-15

In the afternoon I went to Green Cay for an hour with my beautiful wife Terri and put together a nice little list of 39 species including this Belted Kingfisher and Ovenbird.

Belted Kingfisher ... This is the male of the species.  He has one side of the park and two females control the other half.

Belted Kingfisher … This is the male of the species. He has one side of the park and two females control the other half … Taken at Green Cay 1-7-15

Ovenbird ... This guy has been at or near the feeders at the entrance every Winter for at least the last 3 ... maybe even longer!

Ovenbird … This guy has been at or near the feeders at the entrance every Winter for at least the last 3 … maybe even longer!  Taken at Green Cay 1-7-15

Thanks for stopping by and God Bless.  I still have a weeks worth of photos before my big trip so I’ll post a few more local shots before my big North Florida adventure.

 

 

Posted in Birds, Places | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment