Here are the last of the photographs I took last week at the Sharon Wiechens Nature Preserve in The Villages, FL. I saw a Great Blue Heron; the bill and neck of an Anhinga bird peeking out of the murky canal water in front of the lake; a Coot; and a male Boat-tailed Grackle. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Boat-tailed Grackle (male)
Black-bellied Whistling Ducks
Snow Goose (A better view of the same bird shown on Wed.)
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!
Hybrid Canada Goose and Canada Goose
Lesser Scaup Ducks
This Little Blue Heron was hunting for its dinner in the shallow waters on the marshland edge of Lake Sumter in The Villages, Florida at “Sunrise Point”.
The Little Blue Heron like its larger cousin, the Great Blue Heron, eats fish, frogs, crayfish, small turtles, aquatic snails, water fowl eggs, mice, and larger insects. I did not see this particular bird actually get any prey but it sure did try! I had a good view from a raised wooden deck platform in the park and also from the lawn on another part of the small park on the edge of the marsh.
The Little Blue Heron is a small purple-blue heron that often has a juvenile white phase where it closely resembles an egret. I really enjoyed watching this bird and am thrilled to live near many ponds and lakes where there are many wading and water birds around. I took these pictures last night at dusk (November 2, 2015). Please click on the thumbnail image to see a slightly larger version of that photo. Enjoy!
This is a Little Blue Heron and not an egret! I understand how a person could be confused. The Little Blue Herons have a white color phase as juveniles. Yes, the Little Blue Herons really will turn that purple blue color that most people are familiar with.
I spotted this Little Blue Heron on a small pier at a little park lake in The Villages, Florida near Spanish Springs Square on September 13, 2015. Please click on the thumbnail image to see a very slightly larger version of that photo. Enjoy!
Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, South of Gainesville, Florida, is a beautiful place! It is close enough to a small city yet it is wilderness. Within the park there is a woodland area; a few fairly tropical-looking spots; the nice small Visitor’s Center; a vast, marshy prairie; small ponds; and a medium-sized lake.
We went into the interior of the park and paid the nominal day use fee. We did see the Alligator at the Highway 441 overlook just outside of the official park (no charge to go out on that boardwalk pier overlook). The huge observation tower within the main part of the park was closed for repairs yesterday.
There is a lot of varied wildlife at times within this park. I took these pictures on November 30, 2014. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
White Pelican and Cormorant
Roadway in Paynes Prairie State Park
Yesterday I was out walking in the yard and in front of our place here. The first bird I saw was the Mourning Dove which perched on the electric line. The interesting sighting of the afternoon was the Grey Squirrel that scampered out to the road. It then scooted right across the pavement to a nearby grove of Oaks. The squirrel had a Hickory Nut in its mouth. I seldom see any squirrels here so it was a nice sighting.
Canada Geese were here on the pond. I accidentally spooked those geese and off they flew. I wanted to see how things were at the small private community lake across the street and down a small hill. I noticed that there were a number of Canada Geese there so I snapped away. I took these pictures on Sept. 18, 2012. Today I am thrilled to tell you that we have sunny skies and mild cool temperatures here. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
We have a small flock of “resident” Canada Geese here. The geese come and go between the lake that is down the small hill from this little farm and the pond here. Because of the nasty cold weather and high winds we have recently been having, the geese were here on the pond for several mornings in a row recently. These big geese eat grains and grasses for the most part. They are plant eaters. This group I have been seeing occasionally get noisy with their honking. When the geese get alerted to any perceived danger, or when they travel by flying, they tend to honk loudly. This is for the protection of the flock. The funny thing is that the honking stirs up the cattle and sometimes, the cows and steers will start mooing. What a ruckus at times! I don’t really mind because this is short in duration and is just another part of nature. I took these pictures in my yard and at the street end of my driveway (lake picture) on two days this last week. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger photograph. Enjoy!