Saturday, June 25, 2016

Following the prescribed burn

Earlier this week, the Bailey Tract had a prescribed burn take place - it was successful and the preserve re-opened after a few days. Come and take a look at how everything is resuming....
It is quite early and the sun peeking at the horizon is just now shining on the clouds and reflecting back into the pond - these type of vistas just takes my breath away.

This young Little Blue Heron even has a 'ghost' reflection in the pond. Notice the 'calico' effect with its plumage - it is morphing from its first year white plumage to blue - once it reaches adulthood it will be totally blue.

One of the two Mottled Duck family that I came across this morning - these ducklings were slightly older than the other family.

A Mourning Dove silently walking the plank.

The prescribed burn leaves behind interesting hues - though it never ceases to amaze me when I see green shoot coming up just a few days later.

Fire is a necessary component of many ecosystems, and suppression of natural fires has played a role in the environment change that has occurred in the last century. The story of the Bailey Tract is one of natural fire, suppression of natural fire, and the rediscovery by refuge managers of the value of fire in maintaining and restoring a healthy wildlife habitat.

On the scorched floor with just a few green twigs appearing, the White Ibis can be seen foraging along the way.

Across the way I spy several 'white' birds...let's take a closer look....

Great Egrets, Snowy and Little Blue have found this shallow portion of the pond to feed upon.

Up above - a pair of Magnificent Frigatebirds flying below the moon.

The Swallow-tailed Kites are still roosting - soon they will take flight and spend their day floating/soaring the Sanibel skies.

A young Tricolored Heron - the brown plumage tells me that it's young.

A young Box Turtle - next to my small bottle of water you can tell its approximate size. It stayed in its shell while I was nearby - I let it be.

And the Kites are up.....

carrying their first breakfast - unfortunately I couldn't quite make out what course this was.

A Ring-necked Snake - a small snake living up to its name.

A young Green Heron - most of the young ones have fledge which makes it more common to see them out and about.

An adult Tricolored Heron was busy feeding - and boy was it ever fast...

it was quite active and alert, I must say quite successful in its endeavor to catch fish.

Sometimes just staying close to the shore....

making shadows to make its fishing more successful....until.....

off it went.

A fleeting moment of respite until....

the next time.

Off the beaten path - an Osprey was tending to its feathers - giving it a deep cleaning.

Well, folks, that's all for now. The Bailey Tract has persevered and is experiencing 'regrowth' as we speak and soon to be lush and green once again.

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