It was an exciting morning as Greg and I met to see if we could verify again an Indigo Bunting and a Blue Grosbeak. For Breeding Bird Atlas purposes, if we could do this 7 days apart with the bird in the same spot, that would indicate probable breeding, and for this part of Florida, it is rare for either of these species to breed in this general area.
At Wilson's Landing Park next to the Wekiva River, ...
16 May 2013, Wiregrass Prairie Preserve
As I walked the trail, I had been thinking how cool it would be to see an Indigo Snake, thinking the Bachman's Sparrow and the Indigo Snake like a similar habitat. Later, I saw a snake but not on the ground but in the air ...
An in-flight Common Nighthawk, Northern Bobwhite and a family of Eastern Bluebirds with recently fledged juveniles rounded out the morning.
15 May 2013, Wekiwa Springs State Park
After dinner, I went across the street to Wekiwa Springs State Park for a late afternoon stroll. I had no idea it would turn into a good nature outing.
While this male was singing and she was calling, a Red-headed Woodpecker appeared.
With the tanagers to my left and the woodpeckers to my right, an American Kestrel flew in and landed about 30 yards away. I could hear Northern Bobwhite calling from this same spot and also watched as two Great Crested Flycatchers hawked some insects. Eastern Bluebirds were here also along with the abundant Pine Warblers. Not a bad spot at all to pull up a chair and watch the sun set. A Long-tailed Skipper kept darting around me while all this was going on.
13 May 2013, Buck Lake Conservation Area
Mary and Eli Schaperow and I visited the west section of Buck Lake Conservation Area. What a great day to bike and bird as the weather was cool and clouds kept the heat down. The trails can be biked without too much trouble, even for a hybrid bike with thin tires like mine.
If you go here, be aware of typical Water Management District signs--they have trails marked "Road 1", "Road 3", etc. yet on the map from the website, the trails are named red, white, yellow, etc. Download the map from the web and take it with you.
This time of May is historically a heavy time for American Redstarts migrating in this area and we saw 14. I'm certain there were quite a few more as songbirds that darted from one side of the trail to the other in and out of vegetation were left unidentified.
Dragonflies are starting to become more numerous after a slow April. Saw Eastern Pondhawks, Carolina Saddlebags, Slaty Skimmers and ...
Adult Male Halloween Pennant
The April showers we had brought May wildflowers.
Not sure what this flower is. Once I master butterfly ID, time to move on to learning wildflowers, sedges and grasses. I'll leave it to Mary to tell us what this is . . .
and what this is ... update May 14, Andrew Boyle ID'd the flower above as a rhexia species. There are a number of variations and same goes for their common names; one of them is Meadow Beauty.
We will have to go back out here and check out the east section that has some scrub and see what species it has.