Sunday, February 19, 2017

Sunday at the Bailey Tract

I love this time of the year - and at the present we are having beautiful balmy and sunny weather - what's not to love. It started with a bit of fog and it warmed up in no time at all - the trail is void of folks and the birds are waking up, " Let's go!"

The Yellow-rumped Warblers were in great numbers this morning and filled with hyper energy as they zipped by.

The Blue-gray Gnatcatchers were also eager to fill their belly.

There was over two dozen Blue-winged Teals and they were chatting away - they sure were entertaining.

After being seemingly out of sight for a few weeks, the Common Ground Doves have returned and they are feeding along the trails.

The Red Cardinals have become quite melodious and are entertaining to listen and watch.

Several Palm Warblers were observed too - they were feeding heartily - soon they will go back to their breeding grounds.

At least the Mottled Ducks will stay and have their families.

This Tricolored Heron begs for a quirky quote.

Here's a great example of how important it is to learn the bird by shape (Grey Catbird) - especially when it is in a dark recessed corner.

There's something to be said about sunny days and how the colors perk me up.

A young Little Blue Heron was quite focused on getting something else to eat.

A skip over to the Sanibel Garden Preserve provided me with great views of a Kestrel and

an Eastern Phoebe, what a great way to end the day!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Banded birds at the beach

It's officially the start of the Snowy Plover nesting season - so, off I go to the Gulfside Park beach to check things out.
Some of the Snowy Plovers have been banded, this particular lady got her blings as an adult in 2009 in Sanibel.

This little fellow was banded just recently on the East End of Sanibel.

This area of the beach had 8 Snowy Plover, this one is not banded.

Another banded Snowy Plover - this one got its bands last month around the Lighthouse of Sanibel.

My friend Elaine is admiring this beach art which was done on the edge of the roped off area for the Snowy Plovers.

Nearby - a Lesser Black-backed Gull is spotted.

No wonder Sanibel is known as the seashell capital of the world.

Within the shells - treasure can be found such as this Spider crab which looked comical with its two barnacles on its back.

A Red Knot! It liked to hang out with the Willets.

Kites are not my favorite since they look like a predator to the beach birds - but this one, being a sea turtle, I make an exception.

Then we saw some Sanderlings that were also banded....

the only information I have so far is that Sanderlings are banded in Canada - who knew that they came from my country! Oh Canada!

All in all, I'd say it was a great day revisiting the Snowy Plover - I look forward to another season with the hopes of successful fledglings.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Birding Alva

It's Monday and if you've been following my blog for some time now, you know that means it's birding time! Today our adventure is taking us to Alva, come along.....
Truth be told, we had heard about this Baltimore Oriole being seen off Pearl Street and we hoped to see it too - and we did! What a beautiful bird this is!

We walked the nearby neighborhood and spotted this young Red-headed Woodpecker,

a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker,

A White-winged Dove and

another Red-headed Woodpecker. Isn't life grand!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Broad-winged Hawk

A Broad-winged Hawk has made an appearance over a month ago along the San-Cap Road of Sanibel and seemingly has adopted this new location for its own, 3 times a week I travel through there and without fail I see it in the morning and the evening, it's quite a good looking hawk - you be the judge.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Caracara Photo shoot

Elaine and I joined the Caloosa Bird Club this morning - the meeting place was at the Gator Hole. None of us could say for sure why it was called Gator Hole because there are no gators at that preserve, nor is there any water hole to speak of. This little spot can be quite a gem to visit and if you have the place to yourself it's nirvana.
In any event, today's highlight was the sighting of a Crested Caracara that appeared on the edge of the property and gave us good looks while it savored its road kill. I hope you'll enjoy seeing this bird as much as I did.

It was quite entertaining to watch it as it would gather pieces of meat and how it would retreat from the edge of the road when a car would zoom by - only to regroup and gather more meat.

I just noticed the blue color in its tail feathers and how it matches with its lower bill - nature is just perfect in every way!

Soon most of the meat was gathered and it flew off with the carcass dangling from its talons. A good sighting today for me and a good meal for the crested Caracara.