Saturday, June 16, 2012

Walking Around the Lakes

Another day, another lake check. I started by driving along the shore of Lake Lancaster and found an adult Great Blue Heron going in for a rather deep dip.

Great Blue Heron

Then I decided to walk through the Greenwood Wetlands to do the usual Night Heron and owl search. Again, neither could be found. The other usual suspects were there but I was more impressed by the Red-eared Slider peering out of the shallow water.

Red-eared Slider

Under the shade of the cypress trees, a few ducklings rest before their next round of foraging in the Duck Weed.


Since I could use the exercise, and since it was such a nice day, I decided to extend my walk and head over to Lake Davis. I drive by every day but it has been awhile since the last proper inspection.

Dodging the Swan Geese, always looking for a handout, I found a small flock of young Wood Ducks basking in the sunlight.

Wood Duck

A young Mallard figured it was much better to rest up in the grasses along the shore of the lake.


There wasn't a lot going on along the southern end of the lake so I took some time to chat with a Northern Mockingbird.

Northern Mockingbird

On the West side of the lake I was tracking a Tricolored and Great Blue Heron when I noticed something more interesting. Deep in the reeds where the herons were stalking prey, a Common Gallinule sits on a nest. A nice find since we are in full swing of the Florida Bird Breeding Atlas. Every record of breeding birds is a good thing.

Common Gallinule

Soon I was attracted to another set of flying things. Dragonflies were cruising the reeds for insects so I was trying to get some shots for later ID. The wind was picking up so getting the insects to pause for any length of time was a chore. I did get one in focus and I think it is a type of Saddlebags.


While I finished up my dragonfly experiment another Common Gallinule decided I wasn't a threat and swam out past me.

Common Gallinule

As I reached the northern side of the lake I was pleased to see an entire family of Common Gallinules. For those keeping score, they officially changed the name of these bird back to Common Gallinule from Common Moorhen last year.

Common Gallinule

Every now and then the chicks would peck at the adults looking like they were giving little kisses. Love those bald heads.

Common Gallinule

A final close up as I finish my trip around the lakes.

Common Gallinule

This year has been very productive for all of our lake and marsh birds. That means that there will be plenty more photo opportunities in the future.

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