Wood Storks have been here in The Villages, FL, for about a month in larger numbers. A few days ago, I spotted seven of the large white and black birds at Lake Paradise. The big birds mostly are seen standing still or in flight. This is the second instance where I have seen Wood Storks laying on the ground resting. I noted that this behavior is similar to that seen in the White Ibis. I found it interesting.
The Wood Storks mostly fish by putting their large hard scoop-like bill into the mud and sucking in snails, larger insects, worms, tadpoles, frogs and small fish. I have read that some Wood Storks travel miles and miles from their tree roost to search for food. Amazing! I really enjoy seeing these birds! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of that photo. Enjoy!
View of the some of the fields near the parking area and educational building
Sunnyhill Farm Restoration Area near Weirsdale, FL, (19411 SE Hwy 42), is a spot I occasionally visit to just take in the beautiful river-side prairie swampland scenery. This former working, now park, is huge at over 2,000 acres! Nearly all of the park is kept wild and is inhabited by river animals, prairie swamp animals and a variety of wading birds, ducks, and songbirds.
While we were there, we saw a pair of Sandhill Cranes along the road but there was not a good spot to stop to take the picture of them so we just went along our way (of course when we left the park, the cranes were long gone from the entrance road-way area). My hubby and I spent about an hour walking along river and canal trails and enjoyed ourselves quite a lot yesterday afternoon. The overcast and windy weather was not conducive for bird watching but we managed to spot a few different birds. We saw a pair of Red-shouldered Hawks, a Great Blue Heron, a lone Eastern Bluebird and an Eastern Pewee bird. We hope to go back again soon! It is a lovely spot! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
A Red-shouldered Hawk
A Great Blue Heron
An Eastern Pewee Bird
The Ocklawaha River
A Red-shouldered Hawk
A male Eastern Bluebird
A Great Egret
A Red-winged Blackbird, a Common Moorhen, a pair of Sandhill Cranes, a perched Great Egret, a partially submerged Anhinga, a trio of Double-crested Cormorants, a Pied-billed Grebe; Egyptian Geese; White Ibis; and a flock of Hooded Mergansers were all spotted here in The Villages, FL, late in the afternoon on Wednesday. I also saw a most lovely Monarch Butterfly on some wild Aster flowers.
The Grey Squirrels here have become the rodent version of the ever-begging White Ibis! When we parked the golf cart at Paradise Park, I immediately had four little squirrels come begging for any kind of hand-out treat that would be given. I had to say sorry to the little cuties but someone else had already provided a few tasty peanuts. I sure wish folks would stop feeding the wildlife here! Oh well…
Such fun to get out in beautiful weather and see the birds squirrels and yes, butterflies. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of that picture. Enjoy!
A hen Moorhen
Male Red-winged Blackbird
A pair of Sandhill Cranes
A Scenic View of “Larry the Gator’s Pond”
Egyptian Goose and White Ibis
A Monarch Butterfly on an Aster flower
Black-bellied Whistling Ducks, Mottled Ducks and Mallard Ducks were all spotted at Lake Paradise near Schwartz Park and Boone Park yesterday at dusk (about 5:15pm). I am starting to see more ducks each week here. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Wood Storks have been here in The Villages, FL pretty much all year. These are among several of my favorite photographs of the Wood Storks. These birds are not much on looks but are easy-going big exotic wading birds. I enjoy seeing these birds quite a lot! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
A resting Sandhill Crane
I spotted these birds last Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017 at Lake Paradise, as well as on a golf course near Morse and CR 466, here in The Villages, FL. Such fun to get out and watch the various types of birds we have around now. The weather recently has been very windy rainy and cooler. Hopefully I will find time to get out and take a bunch of new photographs to share here soon. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
Canada Geese on Lake Paradise
A Double Crested Cormorant on Lake Paradise at Boone Park
Likely a Red-shouldered Hawk at Lake Paradise
This Eastern Blue Jay was spotted on the lawn at Paradise Park in The Villages, Florida a few days ago. I am thrilled to photograph the little birds as it seems all I ever do is take pictures of the larger exotic birds.
This Blue Jay is the more commonly seen blue jay here in Florida. The other blue jay is the Florida Scrub Jay which is smaller and has a lot more of the blue and only a bit of white/grey. The Scrub Jay is quite rare here now. Both jays love nuts seeds and insects! This one seems to have successfully hunted that morning and had a full belly.
The Mourning Doves were spotted on Sunday at the freshwater marsh where I spotted a lot of egrets and ducks. The doves were perching on the fencing and were not bothered by my presence in any way. These doves seemed to be very calm birds.
I enjoy being in the parks here and taking pictures of the various birds. Always something to see on the lawns, in the trees, marsh preserves and of course, on the lakes. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!