Saturday, 20 November 2010

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.
The Wood Stork (Mycteria americana) pictured above is a truly remarkable bird - prehistoric looking and only found here in Florida. It stands over a metre high, and like the Roseate, is a shy bird that easily takes flight if you get too close. There is several pairs near my home in Florida and I love to walk out early in the morning to see them. They're always at the same place, if you know where to look!
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!

6 comments:

  1. Dear Charlotte, I love those pelicans, too. Your header picture is gorgeous! Pam x

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  2. Just love that first photo Charlotte, have a lovely time in Florida you have just escaped what sounds like a very cold week with possibilities of snow lucky you.

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  3. Wow! Gorgeous captures of these beautiful creatures! You just go from one paradise to another Lotte! I do hope you give yourself time to rest. Even the wildest of stallions takes a break now and then. Stunning photography!

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  4. When we look close enough, we can see a reflection of our human characters in these lovely creatures!

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  5. Lovely bird images. It is bird week, I did wild turkeys on my blog and just came back from a post on native chickens.

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  6. Very beautiful bird photos as always. Yes' i've noticed that Florida has lots of birds because my two Filipino friends who migrated there long ago always have bird photos in their blogs and FB. Maybe it is just like Australia, where birds are always roaming and flying around, even more in numbers in the parks than people.

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