Canada Geese and their goslings, Anhingas, Black-bellied Whistling Ducks, hybrid Mallard Ducks, Grey Squirrels, a medium-sized turtle, and a Great Blue Heron were all spotted at twilight on Saturday at Lake Paradise in The Villages, Florida.
You may be able to spot the goslings in one photo I took. That family of geese was on the opposite far shoreline so I had to edit the picture quite a bit to get a good look at the fluff-ball babies. There also were a few Black-bellied Whistling Ducks beside the proud mother and father geese. Right now it is quite around here due to nesting season and very windy weather. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
These two Great Blue Herons were spotted on Saturday here in The Villages, FL at two different small ponds. The first Great Blue Heron was seen on the shoreline of a tiny almost dry pond near the Hacienda executive golf course here. There was a small thin stream of water almost like a creek flowing at the bottom of the basin. I think the heron was trying for a tasty lizard or snake or possibly a few tadpoles in a puddle. This bird was pretty close to the multi-modal golf cart path so I noticed the heron right away.
The other heron was fishing on the shore of a tiny park pond at the Silver Lake Community Center park a few blocks away from Lake Paradise. I did see the Great Blue Heron take a very short low flight to another spot where it probably felt the fish were headed. These park ponds mainly have smaller fish, frogs, and small turtles in them. I left before I was able to see the bird catch anything. Always fun to watch these Great Blue Herons! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
I spotted White Ibises at two parks this last week here in The Villages. Actually, these wading birds are pretty commonly seen in neighborhoods and at local ponds and lakes. The small flocks were at Paradise Park and Lake Mira-mar in the golf cart parking areas near the lakes.
Ibises at the Lake Mira-mar parking lot are known to be champion beggars! They wait for treats from well-meaning tourists/grandkids who feed them bread and cereal as if they are park ducks (people should not feed exotic wild birds). These are really good birds as they eat insects and are charming to watch. By the way, the one in the photo that is partially brown is an older juvenile. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Common Cormorants and Anhingas are both similar-looking semi-tropical water birds. They fly well, and also paddle around lakes, ponds, and rivers. The Common Cormorants also can frequently be found in salt water marshes or along the shore of the ocean. Both birds eat fish, aquatic snails, worms, frogs, tadpoles, crayfish, and small turtles. The Common Cormorants also eat some shellfish as well as small crabs.
One distinct physical difference between these birds is that the Anhinga has a straight strong bill that is sword-like. The Common Cormorants also have a sturdy bill but it has a slight downward hook at its tip. Both birds often can be seen with their wings outspread to dry. Both also roost in the trees. I took these pictures last week here in my area at two smaller lakes and at a pond. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
These are some of the first pictures I have taken here in my new neighborhood in Florida. We live on a tree-lined street where there are not only large Oak Trees, but there are also Sycamores, Magnolias, and Pines. There seems to be a lot of Grey Squirrels around here. The squirrels seem used to the presence of people. In one picture, I was standing just about ten feet away from the squirrel that was standing still, but not terrified. I am also seeing a lot of different birds here so I will be showing some bird photo’s in coming days. I took these pictures in my yard on March 24, 2013. I plan to post here on Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Friday’s for the coming few months. I am getting to know the neighborhood, setting up the house and also exploring the greater region. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
These pictures were all taken on my property or just in front of the driveway. I hope you enjoy seeing some of the pretty views! I sure do! I took these pictures on several occasions during the late Fall and Winter last year. Things here have been pretty cold and quiet. I was away for awhile and have just returned home. Some of the pictures are of the little private community lake that is nearby, and some are of the pond that my property borders. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
These Carolina Chickadees came to the bird feeder here yesterday in both the morning and afternoon. They were here with the Tufted Titmice, Northern Cardinals, House Finches, and Mourning Doves. I sure do think that they are cute! The Carolina Chickadee and its cousin the Black-capped Chickadee are so similar in looks, it is really hard to tell the two apart. The Carolina is ever-so-slightly larger and has a larger black bib on the upper chest and neck. Otherwise, they are the same.
The Carolina and Black-capped Chickadees eat insects, seeds, small fruits, and small pieces of nuts. They love to pull-out the Black Oil Sunflower Seeds out of the feeder and leave the Millet. Their call is a sound like their name that is repeated six or seven times and is soft-sounding. I took these snap-shots yesterday, Nov. 19, 2012 from my yard and have cropped them so you can see what the tiny birds look like in better detail. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger snap-shot. Enjoy!