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Jenkin’s Creek…

I know a Wood Stork when I see one, but only because of the Florida Birds Facebook page.  I hadn’t seen one in person until today, and never expected to see one so close-up.  But there were two of them on the pier at Jenkin’s Creek, hanging out with the fishermen, looking for a hand-out.  Well, I thought there were two of them until I looked across the inlet and saw the dead tree with the wood storks perched there.  One was clacking his beak together, possibly not happy with me for zeroing in on him.  You could hear the clacking, I took it as a warning.  I have noticed that birds seem to sense your interest in them as you focus with the camera, and not seem to like it.  Very odd looking bird to me.  You have to wonder what Mother Nature was thinking when she gave him a plucked head.  Not much in nature seems to be wasted so I’ll give her credit for having her reasons.  Wikipedia says that they are the only stork to breed in North America, breeding in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, and a recent discovery in North Carolina.

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And then there is the Black Vulture.  I was curious to see what Merlin would say this bird was.  They have white patches on the underside of their wingtips, said Merlin, and I realize that they are the soaring birds I see so often and hope for a second that they are eagles.

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I went out for the sunrise yesterday morning and didn’t take a single picture.  It was too overcast, and I hardly saw any sunshine all day.  Gloomy day, gloomy looking birds, kind of gloomy mood.  Just one of those days…

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Bloom where you’re planted…

I had a conversation with someone from Michigan a while back, and I see now that in my mind’s eye when he said he was from MI I pictured urban blight. I don’t think I realized that that’s where my mind went at the time, it was just a generic impression. Then another recent photography acquaintance began adding pictures of MI onto her Facebook page. Lovely rural scenes from the Upper Peninsula, and I wish I’d seen those images before I had that conversation, I’d have handled it differently.
Something about that conversation brought up memories for me, and I have gotten myself homesick. For what exactly though? My people aren’t in MA anymore, except my sister on Cape Cod. Nope, they are in NY, PA, and NH. And Charley, residing with his relatives at Green Mount Cemetery, in Baltimore. So when I last headed north a year and a half ago I had expected a sense of being footloose and fancy free, flitting from one house to another, leaving the dogs at my son’s house where they would be happy and well taken care of. Of course the distance between everyone’s homes was further in reality than in my daydreams. And, as people do, there were schedules and obligations that had me racing back and forth from one house to another. No flitting for me.
And the timing couldn’t be worse for being homesick, not when we have just barely begun the best nine months of the year here in Florida. I’m sitting on the lanai writing this, at 5 AM, and it’s 69 degrees out. I’ve been hearing a rooster crowing, an interesting addition to the traffic noise that I’m also hearing. We had a mild winter last year, so mild that someone at the pool said that they never put the ‘bubble’ on it last winter. And, she said, that they aren’t expecting to put it up this year either. I’m not sure how they could know that but it’s fine with me. So I’ll stay put for now, but I’ll keep daydreaming about escaping the heat next summer. Heading north to ‘my’ people.  And I’ll plan on doing a lot of flitting!

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birds, Florida wildlife, life, life goes on, nature, photography, Pine Island, sunset, Uncategorized

Low tide…

It kind of smelled, low tide did.  I feel disloyal saying that because you ought to know by now that I love Pine Island.  But last Monday night it smelled, I can’t deny it.  I heard one guy explaining to his kids that it ‘dried up’.  He didn’t know why it dried up, he said, but it dried up.  For once I kept my mouth shut.

I wasn’t going to go out, especially with a Great Blue heron and a hawk to take pictures of right in the back yard, not to mention watching the Little Blue Heron with his lunch.  But I’m really restless lately and most of the time I can’t resist going out.

1030lunchonthelake1030blueheron1030hawkBut at Pine Island you always have Grackles, in the palms or this time on the beach with their nice reflections.  I wonder if the ‘crows’ I see in my back yard are actually grackles.  I’ll have to take a picture and ask Merlin about that.

1030gracklereflections1030grackleinpalmAnd the sunset, always the sunset.  And the light reflecting off the moon.  The moon has been pretty lately.  I’m glad I went out…

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More from the Nature Coast…

I’m cheating a little here, but there were more photos from our photo extravaganza yesterday and I decided that writing a second post would be a really good idea.  For me I mean, just in case.  Today is a longer work day for me and I can’t count on getting out later.  And, seriously, I need to clean the house.

We are into a chilly spell here in Florida.  You can tell this because I’m sitting on the lanai as I write this at 5:30 AM, and I had to put a little sweatshirt on.  I have been so waiting for this weather.  I can go out and work on weeding the front yard, in the sun, in the middle of the day!  I can clean out the garage, which is stuffed full of things I ‘cleaned out’ of the house, and that’s as far as they got.  This weather is why I live here, and while I may fantasize about all the places I might live, or at least visit, it’s why I’ll probably stay put.  But as they say, never say never…

 

 

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I think the little turtle has a twinkle in his eye!

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Fall comes to the Nature Coast…

Peeking out from behind houses, or shining through groups of trees, but occasionally standing alone where they can be properly admired, the fall foliage is in full swing in my little corner of Florida.  I get so excited whenever I see one of these trees in it’s full glory, you would think I was looking at a hillside of maples up north.  I believe this is the Chinese Flame Tree, and even though I wonder what it is every year, I had to look it up again this morning because I can never remember what it is from year to year.  It’s not the fall of New England that I long for, but it’s all I’ve got so it’ll do…foliagereduxfoliagewithtruckfalltreefallfoliage2foliageflowers