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Four-spotted Pennant immature female
It is great to see the dragonflies become more numerous. The numbers were down two months ago for our Lake Apopka survey. Saturday, we do another survey and we should have much bigger numbers to report. These two dragonflies were two of many on East and West Gator Creek at Merritt Island NWR.
Marl Pennant female
I originally ID'd this incorrectly as a Common Baskettail female but Paul Hueber IDs it as a Marl Pennant.
On Blackpoint Wildlife Drive, it was a very slow day for birds. Out on the mudflats to the left, I finally found one lonely bird laying down and it looked dark. I thought maybe a breeding plumage Black-bellied Plover. Get the bins up and there is a bird I have never seen in these mudflats in all the years I have been going here ...
27 May 2013, Hernando and Pasco County
Last year, there was an area on the Pasco/Hernando County border where Mississippi Kites were being seen. This is considered rare in this part of Florida, although many believe the Mississippi Kite--a north Florida raptor--is expanding its range southward.
After reading reports about Mississippi Kites being seen in this same spot over the weekend, and the report also saying larger numbers of Swallow-tailed Kites than normal were there, I headed out there this morning. It was nice to see 11 cars of other birders who had the same thing on their mind.
What a great sight to see--a Burrowing Owl. Not just one, a pair in Pasco County. But wait .... not just two but four with pair in Hernando County about 2 miles away.
Update ... Paul Hueber IDs this as a Red Saddlebags. Thank you, Paul. Odonata Central show this species in Orange County but does not show it on the list for Pasco County where the image was taken. I have submitted this to Odonata Central and I am hoping that once they vet it, they come back and say it is a Red Saddlebags; that would be a Pasco County first.