White Pelican with Lesser Scaup ducks
White Pelicans, Lesser Scaup ducks, Double-crested Cormorants, Seagulls, a Great Blue Heron, Great Egrets, and a lone Wood Stork were all spotted yesterday afternoon at the beautiful Torri Pines golf course pond along Buena Vista Blvd. in The Villages, FL. This spot is in a northern neighborhood here in The Villages.
The Wood Stork, the Double-crested Cormorants, Seagulls, Lesser Scaup ducks, and the White Pelicans are migratory birds from places up north and in the mid-west who have come south to enjoy our warmer weather during the harsh cold months. By the way, last evening I spotted about 200 White Pelicans at the Freedom Pointe lake (both sides). No pictures as I did not have my camera then.
I think a few of these pelicans pictured here were among those sleeping at Freedom Pointe as it was almost dark when I saw that huge flock last night. We sure enjoy seeing all of these lovely birds! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy! P.S. This pond has developed a sink hole in it today (2/15/18) and is now rapidly draining. Don’t know when the needed repairs can be made by our community’s officials. I will let you know when I hear more. Wildlifewatcher.
Great Egret with Wood Stork
Pelicans, Double-crested Cormorants and Seagulls
Great Blue Heron
Hooded Merganser ducks
Hooded Mergansers, and Double-crested Cormorants were spotted at the pond in the Silverlake Community Center’s small park area here in The Villages, FL this past week. I also spotted a small flock of Lesser Scaup ducks at the nearby Lake Paradise right at Paradise Park in The Villages.
I just am wowed by the huge variety of water birds we have here in The Villages during the winter months! This bunch of scaups have become used to people and behave like typical park ducks begging for, and receiving hand-outs (please do not feed bread to ducks as it is not the healthiest for them). Someone was flinging bread cubes to the seagulls and the ducks rushed over to get in on that action.
Most wild ducks are very wary of people so this behavior of coming near the shore when people are around is unusual in migratory birds. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Drake (male) Lesser Scaup
A pair of Lesser Scaup ducks
Egyptian Geese were spotted at the lovely Boone Park on Lake Paradise in The Villages, FL on an unusually chilly afternoon on Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. This quartet is a part of a small number of these exotic imported geese whose ancestors originally hail from North Africa. I would expect that these particular geese were born here in Florida. The Egyptian Geese are closely related to the Shellducks who they closely resemble. The Egyptian Geese are small geese. They are beautiful.
The quartet tried to approach our golf cart at the side of the road (this probably is a learned begging response such as the Ibises around here have). I do not feed wild larger birds (I occasionally do feed songbirds). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Mallard and Hybrid Mallard Mottled Ducks
Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
Hybrid Male Mallard and Florida Mottled Duck
Lesser Scaup Drake (male)
Hooded Merganser Ducks
On Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, I spotted a small flock of Hooded Merganser ducks, a Great Egret, a Pied-billed Grebe and a Wood Stork with White Ibis at Lake Mira-mar in The Villages, FL. The ducks, egret and grebe were in the arm of the lake bordering the highway and the Veteran’s Memorial Park. The Wood Stork was in the parking lot area on the main body of the little pond-like lake. All were such fun to watch! I will be taking a break from blogging for the next couple of weeks and will be posting at my normal schedule when I begin blogging again. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
Wood Stork with Ibis
Wood Ducks were spotted at Tuscawilla Park in Ocala, Florida on Tuesday, January 4, 2017. I had an errand in Ocala so we decided to check on what was going on wildlife-wise at Tuscawilla. Mostly ducks, cormorants, ibis, and a few Wood Storks. No pelicans or herons at all on that occasion.
The Wood Ducks are especially beautiful. Notice that one of the hens is very light in color. I may have photographed this leucastic hen two years ago there. The leucastic color is just a faded color on the feathers and is a rare condition, probably a genetic mutation.
Wood Ducks eat fish, crayfish, frogs, tender small turtles, and aquatic insects for the most part. Occasionally they will also eat grains and fruit. They nest up perhaps ten feet or more in trees where the ducklings glide out onto the ground as pretty-much new hatchlings. That always amazes me. The nests are usually in hollowed out spaces in trees or in specially made “Duck boxes” on posts on the immediate shore or in the water on poles.
Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
A Belted Kingfisher, White Pelicans, Sea Gulls, Muscovy Ducks, and Canada Geese were all spotted on Lake Paradise in The Villages, FL, on January 7, 2017. This little neighborhood lake has a few more inches of water in it since we got a good soaking rain yesterday and the night before last. I am so very glad! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!