Wood Storks are seen here in The Villages, FL every now and then. They fly together in small flocks and stay for several days. These larger wading birds eat grains, small fish, frogs, small tender turtles, small alligators, and aquatic snails.
We have had minor flooding here and I spotted a pair of these Wood Storks strolling down flooded Kim Street at Boone Park on Lake Paradise earlier this evening. The storks were accompanied by a Great Egret, a Little Blue Heron and several Mottled Ducks. The other stork was spotted in the parking lot at the flooded Lake Mira-mar in The Villages. I had to take several of the pictures from quite a distance because of the flooded Boone Park and Kim Street areas (the other bird, which was at Lake Mira-mar, was quite close to our golf cart). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Wood Stork at Paradise Lake on 8/6/17
Wood Storks have been spotted here in The Villages, FL at several small park and golf course lakes. I have seen these amazing big birds at Lake Mira-mar near Spanish Springs; at the Lago El Santiago (Santiago Golf Pond on Enrique Dr.); and also at Paradise Lake at Paradise Park, and also at Boone Park. Happily to note, Paradise Lake is full of water! Hooray! The birds are enjoying it and for the first time in nearly a year, the ornamental waterfalls have been once again turned on!
The younger Wood Storks have a brighter and lighter bill and look a lot less weathered and aged. Old Wood Storks have a huge craggy darker bill – nearly a light charcoal grey. Wood Storks are on the “Threatened” list of birds here in the United States. A few years ago, these birds were considered as “Endangered”. I enjoy watching these unusual-looking exotic wild birds and are always on the look-out for them. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the image. Enjoy!
Wood Storks at Paradise Lake on 8/6/17
Wood Stork at Lake Mira-mar, 8/3/17
Wood Stork at Lago El Santiago, 8/2/17
Bald Eagles, Osprey, Great Blue Herons, Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, Wood Storks, Anhingas, Little Blue Herons, Trio-colored Herons, White Ibis, Glossy Ibis, Double-crested Cormorants, Sandhill Cranes, Mottled Ducks, Muscovy Ducks, Mallard Ducks and Black-bellied Whistling Ducks all have been spotted at the lovely pond at the El Santiago Golf Course in The Villages, Fl this year.
I often can spot several larger birds here and am usually rewarded with good sightings. There is easy access to the pond from Enrique Drive or the recreation center’s parking lot. By the way, the Bald Eagles sometimes perch on the electric line towers both on the golf course and just down the street. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
I photographed these two Wood Storks in The Villages, Florida, this last Sunday. One of the two storks was walking off toward a small pond at a country club just off Buena Vista Blvd. near El Camino, while the other was spotted about a mile away on the shoreline of the El Santiago golf course pond on Enrique Drive.
Wood Storks have been around this community in recent weeks. I think we do see them quite a bit in July, and also in the Spring months here.
The big white and black birds often fly many miles from their nest rookeries to find food. They prefer small fish, crayfish, snails, aquatic worms, smaller turtles, and baby alligators.
I have found the demeanor of Wood Storks to be quite placid and easy-going but it is likely they are just resting a bit when I happen by. I always give the birds quite a lot of space so as to not stress them while I observe or photograph them.
Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
I spotted this very placid old Wood Stork standing in the parking lot at the side of Lake Miramar in The Villages, Fl on June 14, 2017.
This beautiful big wading bird is old as evidenced by the very dark horny bill and darker leathery skin on its face and neck.
I have read where some Wood Storks will fly upwards of fifty miles from their nest to obtain food. I doubt this one flew that far, but it is interesting to hear of that fact.
This Wood Stork may have been in the parking lot expecting to be treated to bread or crackers or corn as some folks still feed the ibis crowd and the ducks. I have also previously seen Wood Storks eating human-given food in this place. The bird was evidently attracted by golf carts and cars in the vicinity. I strongly do not recommend feeding exotic birds (It is against the law in many places including Florida). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photo. Enjoy!
This small flock of Wood Storks were spotted at Paradise Lake in The Villages, Florida on Friday, May 12, 2017. The wonderfully serene but unusual-looking wading birds were here to enjoy the pickings of the remaining aquatic snails, worms, small minnows, tadpoles, frogs and such in the shallow water. The lake is extremely diminished from its normal water level.
Happily, we did have a big rain on Saturday here but it did not do too much to raise the lake’s level. The Wood Storks were only on the lake that one day. I hope we see them again soon! They are one of my favorites! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Black-bellied Whistling Ducks at Tuscawilla Park in Ocala, FL
I have selected favorite photographs I have taken in Florida in the last three years to share here today. I tend to love Wood Storks, all the different woodpeckers, assorted ducks, and the various herons and egret,s the best! I hope you will like seeing these old favorites!
Wood Stork in The Villages, FL
A Little Blue Heron in The Villages, FL
A Green Heron in Dunellon, FL
A Great Egret in Breeding Plumage, The Villages,
Snowy Egret, The Villages, FL
A Pileated Woodpecker, Ocala, FL