Florida's Flighty Friends
One thing about Florida is its bird life! Every time I come here, I'm amazed and delighted by the huge quantity of birds - and it's not just the ones you see everywhere, like the pelican eating dinner (below), but the sheer numbers of unusual birds that you don't see anywhere else in the world. Of course, there are gardens too, but I haven't started "Galloping" yet, because I'm still suffering from jet lag from India and suddenly I've travelled another five hours back through time.
I could spend hours just watching the brown pelicans here - they are absolute comedians, especially around food. This little guy was so anxious to get dinner in the tank that he swallowed the fish in one to make sure his mates didn't get it and then struggled for half an hour to swallow it.
Then there's the Roseate Spoonbill (Ajaia ajaja) - a shy creature (above) that's hard to get close to, but quite astounding when you do, with it's delicate pink plumage, that turns darker when the mating season begins. There's quite a few of them around here, if you know where to look and they keep strange company, as you can see from the shot below.
And the Magnificent Frigatebird (Fregata magnificens) found further north from where I am, but quite an impressive character. This is the male bird (above) showing his true colours and puffing himself up to attract a mate. We don't see that many here in the south of Florida, but there's a huge colony up in Cedar Key, where I took this shot on a previous visit. Soon I'll be featuring some of the herons you see here - there's quite a few!