I saw a flock of American White Ibises in a small park along the shoreline of a very small lake a few days ago. Now, seeing Ibises near a lake or in a park here in Florida is really, no big deal. I was absolutely thrilled, to spot another small group of Ibises hunting for bugs in the grass at the side of our now dry, rainfall retention pond here on my own street! By the way, the Ibises that have brown streaks are older juveniles which are in the process of turning from cocoa brown to mostly all white!
There was also a unique back story to the Ibises being on my block here. I had heard a commotion among the throng of Crows and went outside to see what was going on. I spotted not only the Ibis flock, but there was a Turkey Vulture trying to get a drink of water from the little pool of rainwater left in the basin at that time! It has been very hot here so I can imagine that the vulture just put up with the white birds, the black birds, and yes, that crazy lady with her camera! A few moments later, the vulture flew off to parts unknown. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture. Enjoy!
Today’s post features a number of photographs I took of White-eyed Ibises, both juveniles and adults, at the Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island, Florida. I took these pictures from the roadway and from an observation tower.
Laughing Gulls and a Great Egret joined the Ibises at times and perhaps were interested in trying to grab the good food from them. There was a feeding frenzy going on with hundreds of wading and sea birds there in the lagoon. These birds were feeding on snails, and other small salt marsh aquatic creatures during the out-going tidal change. I took these pictures on Jan. 29, 2013. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
A flock of American White Ibis juveniles were enjoying the lowered water level of one of the larger rainfall retention ponds here on Wednesday evening. We were driving past the medium-sized pond and spotted six of the juveniles. This was the first time I had seen juvenile American White Ibises. They are brown and white with the distinctive pinkish bill. The brown coloring disappears as they mature, usually at between 18 and 24 months of age.
These big wading birds eat fish, aquatic snails, frogs, turtles, crayfish, worms, and larger insects. They seem right at home here in Florida. I did not see any adult Ibises around so this group is probably in the older range. of juvenile (often called immature). I took the pictures on August 4, 2013 at about 6:00PM at a pond near one of the golf courses here where I live. I took the pictures from the roadway while in the car. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!