Early fall migration is in full swing ...
... at least for Prairie Warblers. The section I entered was the north side public entry off CR 448A. This Prairie Warbler had about 8-10 friends, and I saw four more about 2 miles from this spot and two more in another section. Mid to late July is supposedly when they start showing up and sure enough, they have arrived in force.
One of the Prairie Warblers is a contortionist!!!
At the same spot of the large group of warblers, a male Blue Grosbeak appeared. About a mile away, there were two first summer Blue Grosbeaks that I wish I could have had a longer view of. Everywhere I biked on the trail, I could hear Northern Bobwhite. A Great Horned Owl rose up from the canal to my right and I had two sightings of a Cooper's Hawk and a Red-tailed Hawk. Swallow-tailed Kites were present but not in the big numbers that we should start seeing soon as migration is just days away for them. I really came out to see if the Fork-tailed Flycatcher ventured into this area so I didn't look really close for migrants. Based on what I did see, I think I need to get out here next week and spend some "quality time" birding.
15 Jul 2013, Wekiwa Springs State Park
The Sandhill section of Wekiwa Springs State Park is one of my favorite places to go. This section of the park is one of the few remaining fragments of what used to be about 70 million acres of this type of natural community in the Southeast.
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There is currently a lot of this Chapman Goldenrod (Solidago odora chapmanii) and the insects seem to like it. This wasp is a Double-banded Scoliid (Scolia bicincta). The wings are a nice blue/purple color but at this angle the color did not pop out in the image.
A skipper butterfly, I assume a Long-tailed Skipper, was near the wasp. A bee was next to the skipper; I really need to get a macro lens for these little guys.
A short distance down the trail, a Brown Thrasher didn't seem to mind me wanting to walk by. I have not been seeing this species as much as usual so it was nice to see this one here. The Red-headed Woodpecker appeared and is likely one of the pair I published images of earlier this year in the blog.
The previous day, at the start of this trail, there were recently fledged species all seeming to want to be in the same tree: Carolina Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Northern Parula, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, and Eastern Bluebird. It looked like a daycare center for recently fledged birds. It was nice to see Marcus Sharpe on the trail.