Try-colored Heron at Boone Park Flooded Lake Paradise on Street
We just got our Internet back on so I am able to post here. We had evacuated from our home here for the duration of the storm and returned to absolutely no damage to our house (Hooray!). We were fortunate. Our community did fine and there is not a lot of damage here unlike the South of Florida and Jacksonville to the Northeast.
We had minor flooding in a couple parts of our neighborhoods along some of the little lakes and ponds but I don’t think many (if any) houses got lake water inside. The Paradise Park archery range is flooded and I may not be doing any archery practice for more than a few days. It can wait.
I am grateful beyond measure for all the wonderful electric line workers who have come from all over to help Florida get power back on! Also grateful to those disaster workers who are helping in hard hit areas here in the state!
Last night and this morning I went out safely and took some pictures of birds and the little lakes. Here are a few of those photographs. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Great Egrets on Flooded Lake Mira-mar
Flooded Lake Mira-mar
White Ibis at Lake Mira-mar
Tri-colored Heron at Flooded Boone Park on Lake Paradise
Flooding at Boone Park on Lake Paradise
White Ibis at Flooded Lake Mira-mar
White Ibis at Lake Mira-mar
I spotted these water birds last weekend in The Villages, Fl at Lake Mira-mar at Spanish Springs, and the lovely little golf course pond at El Santiago Golf Course on Enrique Drive. Both spots are places I often can spot a few (or more) water birds and wading birds such as White Ibis, Sandhill Cranes, Snowy Egrets, and Anhingas. The golf course was being worked on and golf was not happening while I was there.
By the way, I occasionally spot Wood Storks and Bald Eagles at the area around the El Santiago golf course pond. It is a pleasure to visit the pond on Enrique Drive and try to see if there are eagles or storks around. The eagles are sometimes spotted up on the electric line towers there at the course, and about a block or two down the street. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Sandhill Cranes at the El Santiago Golf Course near the pond
A Snowy Egret hunts in the pond-side grass at the El Santiago Golf Course Pond
An Anhinga Dries off at the El Santiago Golf Course Pond
I saw Pronghorn at the lovely Custer State Park near Mount Rushmore in South Dakota in late June, 2017. The big deer-like animals are sometimes referred to as American Antelope or Antelope.
This herd of Pronghorn freely roam the huge pasture-lands of this state park but are mostly away from the bison. They sometimes run near fences which is shown on one of these photographs. The big grasslands are fenced because the bison are occasionally kept in that area in rotation.
Pronghorn eat grasses. There are plenty of grasses for them now. These are grazing animals. In my experience, the Pronghorn are pretty wary of people and are most often away from roads. I was glad to have my zoom lens! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photograph. Enjoy!
I have just returned from a family vacation to South Dakota. A highlight of the adventure was a visit to the ever-so-lovely Custer State Park in the Mount Rushmore area of the state.
This state park is chock-full of large wild animals. Yes, the enormous pastures where the buffalo (American Bison) roam are fenced but the animals really do run freely in the grasslands. A road for tourists to drive through the area is the best way to see the bison, pronghorn, deer, prairie dogs, and the friendly wild donkeys that call the park home.
I have been to this park three times now and enjoy it quite a lot! I want to wish everyone a happy Independence Day tomorrow (July 4th). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of each picture. Enjoy!
Little Blue Heron at Ochlockonee River State Park, Florida
I spotted these Little Blue Herons at the little lake behind Freedom Pointe in The Villages, FL at a vernal pool in the campground at the Ochlockonee River State Park near St. Mark’s National Wildlife Sanctuary in North-Central Florida, and also at both Schwartz and Boone Parks in The Villages at Lake Paradise (which is now refilling with water). I saw these beautiful big wading birds within the last month (Schwartz and Boone herons possibly with Snowy Egrets or juvenile herons, on Wednesday).
The Little Blue Herons start as white juveniles and as they age, they turn a beautiful purple blue with olive-green legs and feet. They are much more of a blue hue than the similar-looking Reddish Egret.
The Little Blue Herons eat frogs, fish, crawfish, small turtles, baby alligators, ducklings, and occasionally aquatic snails, worms, and larger aquatic insects. They generally spear their prey with their sharp long bill and then gulp the food down. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Little Blue Heron at Boone Park in The Villages, FL
Little Blue Heron at Schwartz Park in The Villages, FL
Little Blue Heron at Ochlockonee River State Park in Florida
Snowy Egret with Little Blue Heron at Freedom Pointe in The Villages, FL
Little Blue Heron at Freedom Pointe in The Villages, FL
Little Blue Heron
I visited the very lovely Ocklockonee River State Park a few weeks ago and spent a wonderful night camping there. I was thrilled to see three White Tailed Deer, an Osprey, a Little Blue Heron, a Red-headed Woodpecker, several Boat-tailed Grackles, a pair of Mourning Doves, a couple of Brown Thrashers, and a gorgeous little White Squirrel (sorry no photo).
I took these pictures several times in the morning and it was very cloudy and misty out in my early shots that morning. I am including a couple of shots of just scenery so you can get a sense of the view at this beautiful Florida State Park. The river is a short walk from the campground area.
This state park is quite close to the St. Mark’s National Wildlife Sanctuary and is probably about twenty-five miles to the Gulf of Mexico. I enjoyed the park and would return someday for a longer stay. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture. Enjoy!
White-tailed Deer at a vernal pool
I spotted this Red-headed Woodpecker while hiking in the Ochlockonee River State Park near the St. Mark’s National Wildlife Sanctuary in Florida last week. I so enjoy seeing these beautiful woodpeckers! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!