Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Estero Bay Preserve

It has been almost a year since I visited the Estero Preserve, reports of several ducks and other species made me itch for a visit.
Before heading there I made sure that I was prepared for the hike - water in the trails and insects in the air - we armed ourselves with boots and bug spray, two of us were glad to have a head net because the deer flies were in great numbers.
A beautiful sunny sky with a rainbow greeted us as we entered the preserve....our first stop....pond..
This is the pond where the American Wigeons have been seen, so....we quietly approached the pond...

because the ducks are known to be skittish and fly off if they are disturbed.

Well, not only did we have Wigeons but also Northern Pintails - sweet!

Not long after that the ducks took flight....we were glad to have been able to see them before they left for the day.

We traveled another mile or so before finding the second pond....

This pond is much larger than the other one and as you can see a lot more species....

Lesser Scaup, Ruddy Ducks and Buffleheads - oh my!

After exploring the big pond we ventured toward the Bay - walking gingerly on different types of terrain - we spotted small peeps....can you see them?

How about now? Isn't it amazing how well they blend in?

Semi-palmated Plovers are one of my favorites.

My birding partners and where we've been....don't you just love the expanse of this property? I highly advise not to venture alone, the trails are not well defined and one can easily get lost without a good sense of direction. Also, some areas are really muddy and very easy to sink in and loose your boots if you're not careful.

Another sweet spotting today: American Avocet.

A Dunlin receiving some sweet notes from a Semi-palmated Plover.

A group of Western Sandpipers.

A Greater Yellowleg.

One more area to venture through water and mud before reaching the edge of the shore.

Positioned by the shore we could see how many White Pelicans were across while a whole group flew above our heads.

Also, quite a few American Avocets far off.

These two were very close to us....what a nice gift!

This was indeed a very sweet visit and I look forward to return and explore the sparrows and rails territory.

What will you see when you visit? Check my E-bird List for the species we saw, also within that list you can click on "map" to see where it is. Happy Birding!

1 comment: