Friday, August 14, 2015

For today you may call me "The Bird Lady"

I was really happy to have the opportunity to do some birding this morning - the skies looked rather menacing - so I stayed close to my escape route.
I went just a few hundred yards into the Sanibel Garden Preserve and had to retreat quickly because of the lightning I saw and how quickly the storm seemed to be approaching. I sat in my car for a bit and when it cleared up some, I decided to venture into the Bailey Tract.

The Pied-billed Grebe stayed close to the shore and allowed me to watch.

He seemed to enjoy the company of a pair of Common Gallinule - used to be known as Moorhen.

This specie is common in freshwater marshes and ponds - though, it has become uncommon to rare and declining from much of interior range.

I wonder what he's thinking....birds are quite smart, a lot more than we may realize.

I ventured a bit further when all of a sudden a Red-bellied Woodpecker practically flew right into me before taking a sharp turn into a tree. The light was horrible at that angle but I figured that if I moved, he would moved stayed

and before I knew what was happening, he flew at my feet and started pecking at my shoes...

I assumed that he was after some bugs that I couldn't see from where I was - behind the camera lens....peck, peck, peck....

I was totally mesmerized by this event and couldn't believe what was happening.

Then he climbed onto my shoe and kept pecking away - I could feel the movements and could tell he was still looking for something to eat...

I raised my hell at some point since he seemed to be interested in the soles of my shoes. I know that I walked into tons of spider webs this morning unbeknownst to me that it would be attracting a young male Red-bellied Woodpecker.

At some point I decided to back away just to see what he would do - wouldn't you know....he followed me every step of the way. Eventually he flew into a tree at about the same time that the rain started - I left with a brand new feeling in my heart and needless to say - full of excitement for this connection. Wow - my birding expedition was short but, oh, so enriching - I will keep and cherish this experience in my soul for many moons to come.


  1. It's those unexpected and spontaneous encounters which I cherish! Your woodpecker looks to be young
    and innocent. He hasn't learned to fear humans yet. Charming little guy. As I said, you get to have all
    the fun!

  2. An amazing experience! Thanks for sharing, France.