Thursday, May 21, 2015

Huge Gator on the path at Circle B - March 22, 2015

This was certainly a surprise.  I have heard this is a common sight here this time of year, but in all the dozens of times I have been to the park, I never saw a large gator cross the trail like this.

Also saw a baby gator crossing the trail too
As well as a large group of first-year babies in the water by mama
And a nice-looking mid sized gator in the water

Lizard Fight at Circle B - March 22, 2015

Snakes, Frogs, and Lizards at Circle B - March 22, 2015

So many critters at the park!  Here is a collage of the back of a ribbon snake, a type of garden snake, which I don't ever see as well as a yellow rat snake:

a green treefrog
and a green anole that turned from brown to green

Sora at Circle B Bar Reserve - March 22, 2015

Birds at Circle B - March 22, 2015

There were actually two best birds of the day today.  The first was this sedge wren, which I don't know if I have ever seen before.  And the second was a sora, a species of rail which I have only seen a handful of times and at this park only.  I will do a separate post for the sora, since I got to watch him for quite a while, but here is the marsh wren along with many others:

sandhill crane (above) and savannah sparrow (below)
 a late-season blue-winged teal pair, female (above) and male (below)
 great blue heron nests, one big baby flew off shortly after the photo was taken (below)
I had forgotten how different the yellow-rumped warbler looks in breeding plumage!(above) and one without breeding plumage (below)
and finally a palm warbler and a barred owl!

CIrcle B Bar Reserve - May 22, 2015

Always much to see here from the widest vistas to the tiniest insect.  This damselfly, called Rambur's Forktail (Ischnura ramburii), I just learned is a female version of the green/blue male I usually see.

 Not sure if this is the male or, more likely, another species of forktail damselfly, the Eastern Forktail (ichnura verticalis)
Also saw a Firetail Damselfly (telebasis byersi)
White Marked Tussock Moth Caterpillar
Monarch butterfly
Wild Petunia

Upper Tampa Bay Park - March 15, 2015

I think the last time I visited this park may have been 1987, my first and last time fishing.  I thought all there was here was a fishing boardwalk with a lot of fiddler crabs, but there are actually many trails.  Actually, some were flooded and already have mosquitos and bee hives, but there is actually a diverse variety of plant life I cannot remember ever seeing before, as well as multiple habitats.  Other unique finds were a mangrove buckeye butterfly and a red-tailed hawk.  I am looking forward to returning in the fall or winter.