Some Florida Wildlife Selections to prepare for Birdmania 2023

Discussion in 'Non Disney Photos / Mobile Phone Photos' started by zackiedawg, Oct 5, 2022.

  1. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Just thought I'd post up some favorite shots I've taken out at the wetlands since the last Birdmania. Though summers can be a little slower than winter and spring, there's not really a bad day out in our wetlands. For those of you considering coming down again, here are some temptations, with some of the cooler birds and shots from Spring through fall...

    A wet red-shouldered hawk drying off after a bath in the pond below:
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    Closeup of a smiling, happy alligator:
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    A fresh batch of red-winged blackbird chicks in the nest:
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    A baby bunny (Marsh rabbit):
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    A great blue heron in the cypress forest with a pig frog for lunch:
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    The ridiculously beautiful male wood duck in full breeding plumage:
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    And the ridiculously cute black-necked stilt chick, just a week or two old:
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    Male least bittern, scoring a fish for dinner:
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    The atala butterfly - a rare species endemic to S. Florida and thought for decades to be extinct - until some were found on a barrier island - they only feed and nest on a plant called the Coontie, which had been farmed to near-extinction in early 20th century - since then, they've replanted coonties all around south Florida and the atala butterflies have made a comeback:
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    The gloriously pink roseate spoonbill:
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    That set was from April 23rd to June 18...I'll post some more here periodically as we get closer to Birdmania season!
     
    gary likes this.
  2. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Some more wildlife...June 18th to July 30th:

    Black-bellied whistling duck mom with her ducklings:
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    The ducklings are simply adorable:
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    A male red-winged blackbird, complaining about something:
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    A rare visit - the American white pelicans sometimes come down to Peaceful Waters, but in all my time shooting there, I've never seen one at Wakodahatchee. Until this time:
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    Bright orange eyeliner might be a little '80s, but the killdeer pulls it off:
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    Pied-billed grebe mom with her black-and-white striped-head chick following along, begging for food:
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    We expect to see super-rarities in the winter when the most species are visiting Florida, but to find a super-rarity in the middle of the summer is unusual. So coming across these fulvous whistling ducks was quite a surprise! I've technically NEVER photographed one - 10 years ago I spotted a hybrid whistling duck that was part fulvous, part black-bellied, but never full blooded fulvous ducks like this pair:
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    A juvenile black-necked stilt flying with mom right behind escorting him to the feeding grounds:
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    The roseate spoonbills have been hanging around all summer, when few people brave the heat to come see them:
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    A large bee ball - honeybees gathering around their queen while they travel looking for a new hive location - it's quite the sound, with that buzz audible from hundreds of feet away:
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  3. gary

    gary Member

    so we are on for 3/3/23 and 3/4/23, friday and saturday like last year, i need to book a flight, there were only 3 seats left as of this morning on the thursday afternoon nonstop to west palm. i plan on staying in boca until monday morning, and on sunday going to miami to visit vizcaya museum and grounds, a place i've wanted to see somehow
     
    Joanie Eddis-Koch likes this.
  4. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Sounds good. I'll work on getting that Friday off - should be no problem with advance-enough notice.
     
  5. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Picking up on July 30th, to September 10th:

    Cattle egret closeup:
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    Tricolored heron closeup:
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    Juvenile tricolored heron taking a bath:
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    Distant wandering raccoon, with an iguana watching in the background:
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    Closeup of the funky looking knight anole lizard - bigger than most lizards, but smaller than iguanas, at around a foot long:
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    Florida softshell turtle getting dry:
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    Green iguana looking ready for a gunfight - he and I were facing off from 10 paces on the boardwalk - until he finally threw in the towel and got out of my way:
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    Green heron looking like a villain plotting something sinister:
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    A northern parula, one of the fall migrating birds passing through:
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    Far from the world's greatest shot...but this is a bird I've only photographed twice before, so I'll take what I can get! The lovely prothonotary warbler migrating through:
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    Nancy AK likes this.
  6. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    September 24th to October 15th:

    Halloween-themed photo - giant scary spider! Actually, only about 1/4 inch in size, the orchard orbweaver is very pretty seen up close:
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    Anhinga heading to shore with its fish catch, where it can eat it without it getting away:
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    Green heron, showing off some lovely colors:
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    The strange fellow is back! After sticking around for a few months in Jan-Feb this year, the chuck-will's-widow returned on October 1st:
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    Night jars are strange looking birds - the chuck is no exception. In fact, he needs a closeup of that weird face to really show how odd looking it is:
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    Anhingas often catch very large fish - fish so big, they don't look like they could be able to swallow them:
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    But this little lady was determined to get that thing down in one gulp - took her 5 minutes or so, but eventually she swallowed it:
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    An osprey heading off with half a fish, after another osprey tried to steal the meal - time to find a new treetop to eat in peace:
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    The ruby-throated hummingbirds are back for winter - hard little things to find and catch in the wild, but stick close to firebush blooms, and you may find one paying a visit:
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    And if you can follow them back to a perching spot, you may be able to find one sitting at rest:
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  7. Justin, your photos are AMAZING!!!
     
  8. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Thank you kindly. Although I've given away my secret already when we did the first Birdmania. You know you can spend just a few hours out there and come back with hundreds of shots and dozens of species - so when I can post my 'best of' for an entire month, it can make me look like a Nat Geo pro!
     
    Joanie Eddis-Koch likes this.
  9. gary

    gary Member

    are the hummingbirds still around in march
     
  10. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    They should still be around until Spring - so usually April or so. They're hit and miss - because there are no feeders, they have to be found naturally in the wild - so usually looking close around the firebush blooms and occasionally hibiscus and some luck and you'll spot them.
     
  11. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Some more wildlife - picking up from October 15th and running through October 22:

    A red-bellied woodpecker all fluffed up:
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    A knight anole lizard - not as big as iguanas, but still pretty chunky lizards around 12-15 inches long:
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    A male common yellowthroat:
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    A red-shouldered hawk flying over:
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    An adult green iguana, in orange mating colors, sitting on a branch in the late afternoon with some lovely backlight:
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    A female American redstart up close:
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    Raccoon, searching around the cypress forest for some food:
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    American alligator up close:
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    An eastern phoebe, who had just stolen all of the spider's captures out of the web:
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    A black-and-white warbler, running around a cypress trunk for bugs:
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    Joanie Eddis-Koch likes this.
  12. zackiedawg

    zackiedawg Member Staff Member

    Some more stuff - starting from October 22, and running through November 5.

    Alligator on approach:
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    Vultures are often unappreciated - they may not be the most attractive birds, but they have a purpose and do a great service to mankind:
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    Nice to have the northern shoveler ducks back in town for winter:
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    A female anhinga heading to shore to eat her catch:
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    Probably not as exciting for all of you, but very exciting for me - only the second time I've ever seen and photographed a Tennessee warbler:
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    A Cuban tree frog attempting to hide from me on the side of a reed:
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    A lovely ovenbird, popping out of the forest where they usually lurk, and raising its crown at me:
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    Male common yellowthroat:
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    So why are they called 'white eyed vireos'? This is why:
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    A tricolored heron flying my way, in a light rainshower:
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    Joanie Eddis-Koch likes this.

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