Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Sanibel Island, Take 1

The wife and I finally took a vacation. All 2 1/2 days of it.

We headed to Sanibel for a little break. I haven't been there since I was a child when I lived in Key West. The tales of tons of shells has always been the draw. Now, beach combers are on the shores from sunrise to sunsets (and beyond) so the chances of finding nice shells just there on the beach is very diminished.

It was soon discovered, however, that by walking out a bit into the shallow waters you can start to feel some shells under you feet just under the sand. We spent numerous hours lying in the two-foot water scooping through the sand as we soaked up some rays.

We came back with some nice unbroken specimens. Some of the best were still occupied so we had to return them to their homes. Shadow boxes are in the planning stages.

The hardest part for me was not having the camera attached to me at all times. Especially with some birds cruising the beach in great light. I complied with the restraint for a lot of the trip.

I did get to take a few pictures on a couple of strolls, though.

We also made a stop out at Ding Darling, my first stop there ever, but the birds were not as plentiful as I was hoping for. Made some ID shots of Red Knots and herons but the numbers I had read about in the past were just not there.

One bird that was in close range was this Anhinga way up in a mangrove tree.


The birds tempting me the most were the few shorebirds that were fairly oblivious to all of the human activity. There was a Black-bellied Plover hanging out close to us on day one that I just really wanted a shot of. Fortunately, it was still there when we took a walk later in the day.

Black-bellied Plover

Also feeding along the waves were several Willet. I think this may one of my favorite shots of one in a while.


The other fun birds were some terns feeding off-shore and the Brown Pelicans that were diving for fish mere feet from us during the stay.

Brown Pelican

For time to time we were also graced with visits from porpoise feeding just a little farther out in the waves.

At night I would take some lighthouse shots and we planned to make the rounds of the island again tomorrow. That will be part two.

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