Sunday, May 29, 2016

Crow at Venice Rookery - December 30, 2015

There wasn't too much nesting activity yet at the venice rookery.  I think I heard some baby great blue herons, but couldn't find them.  Still glad I stopped because I got some interesting photos of two crows digging up a yellow-bellied slider nest.

It was a very fascinating (and sad) saga where the crows watched the turtle bury the eggs, and then went to dig them out one by one.  However, the two crows could not eat that many eggs all at once, nor could they trust each other if they left them in the turtle nest.  So, the crows took turns taking the eggs out, and then re-burring them around the field under patches of grass.  They ate a few along the way too.

Celery Fields, Palmer Road (morning) - December 30, 2015

This morning I was able to find a few bird species at the deck at the northern celery fields.    Pictured below: a group of least sandpipers, savannah sparrow (there were three there), wood stork, and northern harrier.

Goldeneye, Sarasota - December 30, 2015

Of course I stopped to see the female goldeneye again today at the Founder's Club off Fruitville Road in Sarasota too!

Logerhead Shrike, Sarasota - December 30, 2015

Stopped at a soccer field on the way back to re-find the goldeneye along Fruitville road in Sarasota.  There wasn't much here, but I did get a few nice shots of a loggerhead shrike.

Akerman Park, Sarasota - December 30, 2015

I went here twice today to look for a canvasback duck reported yesterday.  Looking back at my photos from today, I realized I photographed it the first time I visited in the morning without even knowing it.  The same thing happened a few months back at merritt island where I photographed a canvasback duck, a life bird, without even knowing it at the time.  Oh well, good to know she was here.

Blue Morph Snow Goose, Sarasota - December 30, 2015

Came back to Sarasota again today to see the rare blue morph snow goose, as well as get to the celery fields i didn't have time for yesterday.  The snow goose was still here waiting for the bird paparazzi, which was also here.

Celery Fields, Sarasota - December 29, 2015

Wasn't sure where to look for birds in the last few minutes I was able to stay in Sarasota today.  This northern harrier was spotted near the parking lot of the celery fields off Fruitville Road.  I will stop here again tomorrow to check out the other side of the street.

Goldeneye, Sarasota Founder's Club - December 29, 2015

Another birder at the snow goose area today let us know that a goldeneye had been hanging around in a retention pond next to the Founder's Club down the road.  Sure enough, here she is, with her beautiful golden eye, a life bird for me!

Akerman Park, Sarasota - December 29, 2015

Across from where the snow goose was spotted is a small lake at Akerman Park.  There were several ring-necked ducks, blue-winged teal, and lesser scaup as well as a few more common species of birds.

 blue winged teal
 ring-necked ducks
 lesser scaup 

Blue Morph Snow Goose, Sarasota - December 29, 2015

It is rare enough to have seen a (juvenile) snow goose in Florida these past few weeks in New Port Richey.  Today I went to find the "blue morph" variety of snow goose down in Sarasota, an even rarer bird for Florida.  It was right off of Fruitville road, near the celery fields.  There were many other species in the same little pond included spoonbill (one was banded), killdeer, northern harrier, glossy ibis, pie-billed grebe, and more.

Tree Swallows, Hudson - December 29, 2015

What a great start to a day of birding.  Just before the entrance to Suncoast Parkway at US52, I had to pull over to photograph these hundreds of tree swallows.  I only saw this one other time, almost exactly two years ago in Sarasota in 2013, which ironically is where I am heading today.