birds, egrets, Florida wildlife, photography, sunrise

A Christmas for the birds…

I went out for the sunrise on Christmas morning.  As I drove to the Hammond’s Creek bridge I checked the rear view mirror, and again, streaks of red in the sky way ahead of what Siri swore to me was the time that the sunrise would happen.  Pretty sunrise, and an Egret joining me for a change.  Our one-footed heron friend was also there, but on a dock too far away for the wide-angle lens to catch him.


Then it was off to Palm Harbor in search of a Roseate Spoonbill.  Unfortunately I was too early for the spoonbill, I hear he’s an afternoon visitor.  But there were lots of birds at these retention ponds, which turned out to be a much prettier setting than I had imagined.


An Anhinga, also known as a snake bird (according to Merlin).  They dive underwater and spear fish with their dagger-like bill.  Sometimes they swim with only their head and neck out of the water.  This would be a female since it’s brown, males are black.  They perch in the open and spread their wings to dry.  I saw lots of perching and wing-spreading going on.

1225woodstork1225woodstork2And a Wood Stork or two.  They are hard to miss with their bald heads.  And I loved how lush that area of retention pond looked.  I didn’t adjust the color on that, it really was that intense.

The reddish looking bird in the feature photo above is actually a Glossy Ibis.  A new bird for me.  With a two-footed Great Blue Heron, or possibly not, I guess I’m assuming things here.

Except for the period of time in which I thought I’d lost all the photos that I took today, it was a good morning.  Followed by another delicious dinner with my wonderful neighbors.  I feel like part of the family now.  Christmas was an exhausting, even if it was fun, sort of day for so many years.  This year it was peaceful and calm, and that is a good thing…