Migratory ducks, a lone songbird, and some wading birds are among the birds and waterfowl and full Lunar Eclipse, I have spotted in recent weeks here in The Villages, FL.
I tend to visit the smaller ponds and lakes here which are pretty easy to get to in our golf cart. Many have multi-modal (golf carts, bicycles and pedestrians) path access. I really appreciate being able to observe the wildlife without disturbing the birds.
We have wading birds, song birds, migratory ducks, Canada and Egyptian geese, and the usual Cotton-tailed Rabbits and squirrels, occasional Coyotes, Bobcats, and Foxes and the very rare Black Bear here. Most of the birds, ducks, waders, geese, and squirrels are pretty easy to spot. Usually there is something of interest to observe and photograph when the weather cooperates (I’ve added in the photo I took of the Moon just because). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
Great Blue Heron
The Recent Lunar Eclipse
Northern Shovelers and a Ringed-bill Gull
A Palm Warbler
Bald Eagles nesting in the high tension electric towers; Double-crested Cormorants perched on pilings in a pond; A Little Blue Heron on the hunt in a drainage ditch; a cute little Pied-billed Grebe; Ring-Necked and Lesser Scaup Ducks on a local golf pond; and a small flock of Mallard Ducks on the banks of Lake Paradise were all spotted last week in The Villages, Florida!
We have an amazing variety of birds here now. We get many migratory birds down from the Midwest and other regions of North America. Such fun to get out to our many ponds and small lakes to see what species has come to visit on any particular day! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Bald Eagle near it’s nest
Little Blue Heron
Ring-Necked and Lesser Scaup Ducks
Bald Eagle on it’s Nest
Please click on the thumbnail image of these pictures I took this past week here in The Villages, Florida. As ever, enjoy!
Drake Ring-Necked Duck
Drake Ring-Necked Ducks
Wood Storks, Great Egrets, Great Blue Herons, Double Crested Cormorants, Ring-necked Ducks, and Hooded Mergansers all visited the little park lake (Paradise Lake) here in the past two weeks.
An interesting thing about Wood Storks is how they sit. Their knees bend so that their lower legs rest in front – quite the opposite from many animals. and of course, people.
I took these pictures on Dec. 21-22, 2016. Most of these water birds are meat-eaters and they certainly had easy fishing since our lake is drying up (we are in a drought). I wish all who celebrate, a happy Hanukkah. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy! Happy New Year!
Great Blue Heron
Hooded Merganser Ducks
Double Crested Cormorant
Great Egret in Breeding Plumage
Mallard Ducks (males)
Mallards, Black-bellied Whistlers, Ring-necked Ducks and Hooded Mergansers were all visitors here at the little Lake Paradise in The Villages, FL this last two weeks. I took most of the pictures on December 11, 2016.
The Ring-necked Ducks and Hooded Mergansers are both diving ducks that eat fish, frogs, turtles, and larger aquatic insects.
The Whistlers and Mallards (also those Mottled Ducks around) eat both fish and plants. They are tipping ducks that are most often seen with their tails up and heads down in the water when feeding in the water. Mallards (and Mottled Ducks) and The Whistling Ducks seldom totally submerge. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
White Pelicans, Wood Storks, Great Blue Herons, Osprey, Ring-necked Ducks, Hooded Merganser Ducks, Great Egrets, a Belted Kingfisher, Sandhill Cranes, and a Red-tailed Hawk were all spotted on our neighborhood park lake within the past two weeks. It was amazing! I so enjoy bird watching and it was really fun to see so many different birds here at once. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of that photo. Enjoy!
Red-tailed Hawk in Flight
Great Blue Heron
Ring-necked Ducks have arrived here in a small flock this past week. I saw about ten of the black and white tuxedo-colored drakes and probably four hens which are brown and tan. The males look quite a lot like the Lesser or Greater Scaup Ducks so one has to look at the bill carefully to correctly identify which ducks one is seeing.
I took these pictures on Nov. 13, 2016 at Swartz Park on Lake Paradise in The Villages, FL. By the way, I happily saw a few White Pelicans and some Coots on one of our little lakes nearby the other day. More and more migratory birds are showing up for their annual Winter visit. I will take a few pictures and share them here on the blog in coming days. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version. Enjoy!
Southern Bald Eagle
Little Blue Heron
This nature preserve is part of The Villages, Florida in a new area to the South end of the development. I went to the preserve on December 15, 2015 and enjoyed seeing American Coots, a Little Blue Heron, a Bald Eagle (up on the high tension electric tower), a Red-bellied Woodpecker, the Sherman’s Fox Squirrels, a number of ducks in the distance, and Meadowlarks.
In the past, I have also seen Great Egrets, and a White Tailed Deer (across on the far side of the lake). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture. By the way, it was raining lightly when I was at the preserve. P.S. I saw a huge flock of White Pelicans arrive at the small neighborhood lake near my home this afternoon. I hope to get some pictures taken while the birds are still around. Wildlifewatcher
Scenic View of the Far Shore
Southern Bald Eagle
Sherman’s Fox Squirrel
Observation Tower and Deck
In the past few days I have again seen “Hank” the resident Great Blue Heron here at the little farm pond. I also have spotted a handsome drake or male Ring Necked Duck, a few Canada Geese, and a pair of really nice Mallard Ducks. The Ring Necked Duck was paddling on the little private community lake that is across the street from my home here. The Ring Necked Duck is a migratory visitor and likely a scout duck for a larger flock on its way here from up North. The Canada Goose is a member of the resident flock at the Cumberland Mountain State Park here in Crossville, TN. The Canada Geese there at the state park seem to be rather fond of people and are outstanding beggars. I took these pictures on Nov. 13, 20012, and again on November 14, 2012. Please click on the thumbnail images to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
A Pair of Mallard Ducks
There are still a few ducks around the little farm pond. All of the ducks and geese here are wild waterfowl. I do not feed the waterfowl at all, at least not intentionally. There is a pair of very bright Mallard Ducks that has figured out that tasty little morsels of bird seed fall from the feeder whenever birds perch there. When the feeder tips a bit, seeds fall to the ground and boy to those ducks enjoy it! So the pair of Mallards can sometimes be seen waddling up to the house area from the pond. It is slightly comical.
The other ducks here are a small flock of Wood Ducks, and the lone female Ring-Necked Duck that has lived here for several months. The Mallards and the Wood Ducks live around here all year-long but the Ring-Necked Duck should be a migrant visitor. We will see. I took these pictures on May 4, 2012 and again on May 6, 2012 in my yard. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
A Drake Mallard Duck
A Drake Wood Duck
The Hen Ring-Necked Duck