Wednesday, May 4, 2016

I was due for a long walk in peaceful nature - a stop to the Sanibel Garden Preserve and the Bailey Tract seemed to fit the bill, I made it just in time before our liquid sunshine came through.
I saw this Marsh Rabbit a week ago at exactly the same spot - "there's no place like home".

A White Ibis in its bright breeding plumage.

A Great Egret, always fun to watch - whether it's preening or intently eyeing its next meal.

I was happy to see that the little Killdeer family is still alive and well - the young ones are really coming along nicely, slowly shedding their downy feathers.

It was interesting to notice that when they were all 'downy', they had a single breastband - now a few weeks older, I can see the second breastband coming through.

There's a bit more growing up to do before they can be on their own.

These two mating under a tight bud first gave me the impression that they were "Great Purple Hairstreak" but the red spots and red-orange body were absent - I consulted with my friend Libby who feels that they are Mangrove Skipper.

They do fit the description: 2 1/4". Brown above; forewings have blue lines; hindwings have iridescent blue spots. Below, hindwings have blue lines. Habitat: Mangrove swamps. Food Plants Red Mangrove. Range c and s Florida (National Audubon society - Field guide to Florida).

Around the corner a Green Heron was resting, I could see his orange legs which is an indication of its breeding period.

I love how everything is lush and filled with wildflowers - here the White Sedge is going to seed.

Along the boardwalk the tall sedge has also run its cycle.

The trails are inviting and providing 'quiet' footsteps.

 Words to consider: "Let us be silent, that we may hear the whispers of the Gods." Emerson

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