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Posts tagged ‘Lake County Florida’

The Sandhill Cranes Visit

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Six Sandhill Cranes were spotted on the shores of our little neighborhood park lake, Paradise Lake, on Sunday, December 11, 2016.  Two were near Swartz Park and four were on the far shore across from Paradise Park.

I think I witnessed a courtship dance but that is uncertain.  All of the sudden two of the four cranes started flapping their wings, bowing down a little and then each hopped several times. I think it was hubba-hubba I am great or maybe aggression?  Who knows?  I have never seen this behavior in person.  These are likely not resident Florida cranes.  I believe these are Winter visitors and may be on the way further South.  Again, who can tell?  Perhaps these beautiful big birds will remain in The Villages for the Winter season.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version.  By the way, in one picture, there is a Great Blue Heron standing very close to a Sandhill Crane.   The crane is the one with the red marking on its forehead.  Enjoy!

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An Inquisitive Blue Jay

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This inquisitive Eastern Blue Jay was spying on the goings-on in the parking lot next to Lake Miramar in The Villages, Florida, yesterday late in the afternoon.  Blue Jays are pretty intelligent birds and I think are often interested in what is happening around them.

I also think that the medium-sized songbird was investigating the fact that the White Ibis crowd and Seagulls in the park, were being hand fed by well-meaning (still should not be happening) tourist children.  Maybe the Blue Jay had even been in on the goodies.  Who knows?  After a few moments, the jay flew off to other adventures elsewhere.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo.  Enjoy!

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Anhingas and Double Crested Cormorants

Anhinga

Anhinga

Anhingas and Double Crested Cormorants both are fairly commonly seen here in Central Florida lakes and ponds during the Winter months.  Both are water birds that fly as well as swim, dive, and stand or walk on the shoreline.   Anhingas prefer fresh water and Cormorants are seen in both fresh and salt water.  Both birds are meat eaters.

The Anhinga is a larger bird than the Double Crested Cormorant.   Anhingas have a long sword-like bill while the Double Crested Cormorants have a shorter slightly thicker bill with a slight hook at the tip.  The Anhinga has a honey brown throat and some streaky white feathers on the tail and back.  The Double Crested Cormorant is very dark brown with the orange-yellow feet and bill.

Anhingas tend to roost in tall trees such as the Cypress Tree.  Anhingas are often solitary or with a mate while cormorants tend to be more of flock group birds.  I photographed both of these kinds of birds here in the past month.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger version of the photo.  Enjoy!

Double Crested Cormorants

Double Crested Cormorants

Double Crested Cormorants with Pelicans

Double Crested Cormorants with Pelicans

Bill of Anhinga

Close-up of the Bill of an Anhinga

 

Anhinga

Anhinga

Double Crested Cormorants

Double Crested Cormorants

Anhinga (left) and Cormorant

Anhinga (left) and Cormorant

More Views of Lake Paradise Waterbirds

Juvenile White Ibis and Adult White Ibis

Juvenile White Ibis and Adult White Ibis

Tri-colored Heron

Tri-colored Heron

Juvenile White Ibis

Juvenile White Ibis

 

White Ibis, Tri-color Heron and Mallard Ducks were spotted last week here at Lake Paradise in the lovely little Paradise Park in The Villages, Florida.  This small lake is home to a wide variety of geese, ducks, coots, cormorants, egrets, ibis, herons and turtles.  I really enjoy seeing the big birds in spots around the lake.

By the way, the Apple Snail is a favorite food of several of the wading birds here, especially so for the ibises.  It also is “Duck chasing season” where bachelor ducks vie for the hen of their dreams and chase each other, and the hen, all over the lake.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture.  Enjoy!

Drake Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Duck

Drake Mallard Duck

 

 

 

 

 

Waterbirds at the Lake, Part 2 of 2

Black-bellied Whistling Ducks

Black-bellied Whistling Ducks

Snow Goose (A better view of the same bird shown on Wed.)

Snow Goose (A better view of the same bird shown on Wed.)

White Pelican

White Pelican

 

 

This post concludes the two part look at the amazing bunch of water birds that I saw on Tuesday at Lake Paradise in The Villages, Florida.  I was so thrilled to see all the variety of birds here.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger view of that photo.  Enjoy!

Great Egret

Great Egret

Mallard Ducks

Mallard Ducks

Hybrid Canada Goose and Canada Goose

Hybrid Canada Goose and Canada Goose

 

Lesser Scaup Ducks

Lesser Scaup Ducks

White Pelicans

White Pelicans

Seagulls

Seagulls

It’s Woodpecker Wednesday!

DSC_3829 - Version 2I spotted this chatty Red-bellied Woodpecker in my backyard Live Oak Tree this past weekend.  It was playing peek-a-boo with me and I only got a quick few snaps taken before the bird flew off to other places.  I rarely see woodpeckers in my trees so I was thrilled when this one visited!  Hopefully, I will see it or its friends again.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture.  Enjoy!

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A Pair of Hawks in the Neighborhood

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This pair of Red-shouldered Hawks has moved into the neighborhood here where I live.  We have been seeing the birds of prey here for the past week.  I think they are now in the process of nest building.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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Pictures of Several Kinds of Herons

Green Heron, Dunnellon, FL

Green Heron

Here are some of the various kinds of herons I have spotted here in Florida.  I have seen the common Great Blue Heron; the Great White Heron; the Little Blue Heron in both the blue and the white phases; the Tri-colored Heron; and the Green Heron.  I have not photographed a Yellow-crowned Night Heron but I did spot one at Sanibel Island a couple of years ago.

Around The Villages, Florida area, I often see the Great Blue Herons, the Little Blue Herons and the Tri-colored Herons.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo.  Enjoy!

Tri-colored Heron

Tri-colored Heron

Adult Little Blue Heron

Adult Little Blue Heron

Juvenile Little Blue Heron

Juvenile Little Blue Heron

 

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron (photo taken at dusk)

Great White Heron in Breeding Plumage

Great White Heron in Breeding Plumage

Large and Small Birds Around the Street

 

Cedar Waxwings

Cedar Waxwings

Cedar Waxwings, Boat-tailed Grackles, Northern Cardinals, and of course, White Ibises all have visited along the street here where I live in recent weeks.  It is always surprising to see which bird (and squirrel) is around!  The Grey Squirrels are usually well-behaved but on occasion, they do walk gingerly across my front screened porch screening.  No holes and that is a status I hope continues.

The Ibises are gentle and unfortunately easily frightened when grazing on lawns (not so when begging at the local park lakes).  Occasionally we also have Eastern Blue Jays, Carolina Wrens, Northern Mockingbirds, and Palm Warblers around but they are pretty rarely seen (same for Bluebirds, Crows, and hawks or vultures).  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture.  Enjoy!

Grey Squirrel

Grey Squirrel

Northern Cardinals (likely juvenile males)

Northern Cardinals (likely juvenile males)

White Ibis

White Ibis

 

Boat-tailed Grackles

Boat-tailed Grackles

White Ibises

White Ibises

White Ibis

White Ibis

 

Yard Birds

Palm Warbler

Palm Warbler

A hen Northern Cardinal, a Palm Warbler, and a small flock of White Ibises were all visitors to my yards this past week.  I took the pictures of the cardinal and warbler from inside my home through the window.  The Ibises had taken advantage of the rainy weather to seek out grubs and worms in the lawn.  Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

Hen Northern Cardinal

Hen Northern Cardinal

Palm Warbler on the Live Oak

Palm Warbler on the Live Oak

White Ibises

White Ibises

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