Saturday, February 8, 2014

Ding Darling with SanCap Audubon Group

It's Saturday morning - time to meet up with the SanCap Audubon group, this time we met at Ding Darling. A nice group of approximately 50 people showed up - we carpooled and entered the Wildlife Drive.
It was 8a.m. and quite a bit foggy - upside, the temps were in the 70s....can't complain.

First treat of the day was the American White Pelicans - check that wing Span (108") and those legs!

Coming in for a landing.

Landing gear engaged.

Did you see that? Not bad for a landing, hey?

Several Yellow-crowned Night Heron were seen by the mangrove roots.....great spot for breakfast fish....and lunch....and dinner.

Front and center - a Double-crested Cormorant in breeding plumage....backdrop of Semi-palmated Plover (far right), A Least Sandpiper and 4 Dunlins.

 A group of Willets surrounding the Marbled Godwit, on the forefront an adult White Ibis.

The Marbled Godwit stood and walked - pleasing everyone that was watching it.....what a beautiful bird!

Red-breasted Mergansers - a female and a young male. Those diving ducks are hard to capture sitting still and fun to watch.

More American White Pelicans by the Tower.

An Osprey was observed flying with nest material - he must be doing some sprucing up.

Willets, Short-billed Dowitchers, Dunlins and White Ibis and Marbled Godwit too.

White and Brown Pelicans.

Snowy Egret busy chasing fish.

The star for the day - Marbled Godwit.

Double-crested Cormorant

A close-up of the Willets with Short-billed Dowitchers in front.

Oh, Look! What do we have here?

A Magnificent Frigatebird! A large seabird with a wingspan of 90"....always a delight to see.

A Brown Pelican molting its neck feathers and getting ready for breeding plumage which will be chocolate brown.

Well, what do you know.....a gator strolling by and checking out the lunch menu.


  1. What a wonderful outing for you and the group! Great bird sighting, the white and brown pelicans are cool. And I love the Godwit shots. Wonderful post, have a happy day!

  2. Thanks Eileen, any day birding makes for a happy day! Heading to Bartow tomorrow - that should be fun.

  3. Well I learned something by your pictures... I thought the white pelicans was all white. I was wrong they have black on there wings. How different the brown pelican looks so different when molting.