Twenty participants enjoyed a beautiful evening for the Sunset Boat Tour, leaving the dock at Crystal River Preserve State Park. Park Volunteer and Citrus Audubon member Holly Alexander provided the group on the boat tour of the refuge with interesting history and facts while pointing out numerous Eagle and Osprey nest. Some of the nest were occupied, while a few nearby trees held mature birds we enjoyed viewing and photographing. A most wonderful evening with a stunning sunset was enjoyed by all. Kathy Lemmer
Sixteen birders had a very enjoyable and productive morning at Inglis Island
and managed to tally around 60 species! The "Bird of the Day" honor had to be split between a Summer Tanager and Prothonotary Warbler which were very cooperative.
Starting off the trip in the large open area just inside the gate, a very active male American Kestrel provided great views as it flew from tree to tree and several Yellow-throated Warblers were also flying back and forth between trees, possibly feeding a youngster which was seen inside one of the trees. Another cooperative bird was an Anhinga drying out at the Dam and seemed to enjoy showing off its "courting" turquoise eye make-up.
On Friday March 22, twenty five arrived to a beautiful morning for birding. We headed straight out to the Temple Mound at the Crystal River and climbed to the top to enjoy the wonderful view and to spot several birds. Afterward we explored both the open field and wooded area of Mullet Hole and the Crystal Cove Trail which led us again to the Crystal River. Everyone seemed to enjoy the beautiful scenery with coves, ponds and trails through the woods that this area has to offer. Kathy Lemmer Bald eagle Osprey Brown Pelican Anhinga Yellow-crowned Night Heron Great Egret Red-bellied Woodpecker Red-winged Blackbird Red-shouldered Hawk Pileated Woodpecker Common Grackle Mockingbird Cardinal Ground Dove Gray Catbird Eastern Bluebird Palm Warbler Northern Parula Blue-gray Gnatcatcher Bufflehead Chickadee Titmouse Hermit thrush TV/BV
Twenty folks joined our CCAS Trip at Potts Preserve for a rewarding and
adventurous bird walk. The group tallied 34 species, including two special appearances-a pair of Swallow-tailed Kites soaring low over the trees and several Yellow-throated Vireos along the 2 1/2 mile trek.
Also, five species of warblers were seen, including the Yellow-throated and the Black and White and the Woodpecker "Grand Slam" was achieved, with the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker heard at the boat ramp.
The bonus adventure for some was the crossing of the slightly challenging boardwalk across a very wet cypress slough!
Nine chilly birders began our annual car caravan through Half Moon Preserve. Fortunately the morning warmed up a bit, remaining brisk and sunny- perfect for lots of bird activity. We drove the main road stopping occasionally along the way. At McKinney Rd we began our walk through beautiful oak hammock to the boardwalk. Mills Creek meanders below- a very pretty sight with purple Iris in bloom, a Belted Kingfisher flying across, and the hoot of a Barred Owl in the distance. Oh, and a Wild Turkey briefly seen along the way ! The 34 species seen are posted on ebird. Eileen Riccio
While fourteen hard working bird folks trudged a couple of miles up, down and around in the sun, three others enjoyed a mini big sit on the hill and in the shade. They were Mike Smith, Mavis Grebenc, and Christie Anderberg. Their "efforts" yielded a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, a Ruby-throated Hummingbird, a male American Redstart, and two female orioles! The trudgers accounted for another forty two species including: Six woodpecker species including upwards of ten Red-heads. No Red-cockadeds or Hairies. Six warbler species, including Common Yellowthroat, Yellow-throated, and Black and White. Two Wood Ducks A Blue-headed Vireo A tom turkey that flew right past us We tried hard to detect Bobwhite Quail that we know to be present, but we were unsuccessful. Ken Spilios even braved the heather a couple of times trying to flush them. A very enjoyable outing was had by all, especially the sitters. Rey Wells
We had quite a turnout at our field trip to Ft. Island beach on Sunday, February 24th. It wasn't exactly the best conditions for birding though. Too many people on the beach with kids that were intent on chasing the gulls. We saw 23 species for the day. The weather turned chilly with an overcast sky and the wind was coming in from the north-west. The tide was extremely high and other than over 100 Laughing Gulls, one lone Ring-billed Gull and two Black Skimmers, we had few shorebirds on the beach. There were Boat-tailed Grackles on the wires and some saw a lone Bald Eagle fly by. The orange buoys had Cormorants, Royal Terns, Forster's Terns and two Herring Gulls. The rock jetty's had Ruddy Turnstones, Willets, and a lone Sanderling along with more Royal Terns. A walk out to the boat ramp yielded a Clapper Rail that answered a call and a few Lesser Scaup, 4 Red-breasted Mergansers (two flew by, giving the group a look at their wing pattern in flight) and 3 Common Loons. Other species seen were Brown Pelicans, Osprey, Red-shouldered Hawk, Great Blue Heron, Yellow-rumped warblers, and Dunlin (seen by a few). Afterwards, 15 of us had dinner at the Hardwood Smokehouse BBQ. And a good time was had by all....... Ken S.
On day 2, after meeting at Parrish Park and picking up several Gull species, including the Great Black-backed Gull and a Common Loon, we did our normal short walk on West Gator Creek Rd. We really hit the "birdpot" with many A. Avocets and L. Yellowlegs in the small pond with perfect reflections. Also, the Indian River had a group of L. Scaups and the shore- line had Willets, Dunlins, Sanderlings, and Least Sandpipers.
After one of our best starts, we took off for Black Point Wildlife Drive. For some reason, we had the Drive to ourselves which was nice. Our first stop was at Duck Point where we picked up B.W. Teal, N. Shovelers, N. Pintail, and Hooded Mergansers and A. Coots, of course.
Further along at the nest platform, a Light Red-tailed Hawk was posing for the group! At the Viewing Platform (closed) parking area we managed to see a good number of Marbled Godwits, Reddish Egret, Black Skimmers, Caspian Tern and a nice group of soaring White Pelicans.
Other birds seen along the drive, at the Visitor's Center and on the Canaveral National Seashore were:
o Mottled Duck and A. Wigeon, giving us 7 Duck species for the day o N. Harrier, Peregrine Falcon, Bald Eagle and Cooper's Hawk o Green Heron o Sora o Eastern Bluebird o Loggerhead Shrike o FL Scrub-Jay o Painted Bunting
Even though, we broke up after stopping at the Visitor's Center, we tallied 74 species with many contributions from most of our participants.
Another fun and productive Audubon Trip, Jim & Eileen
Seven excited folks joined us for our annual OWP bird trip and we were
immediately surprised when a Volunteer came up and told us that the Tram was waiting for us! Our driver/guide Mary was excellent and had some good spottings for us, like Blue-headed and White-eyed Vireos and a Gull-billed Tern hanging out with a Caspian and Forster's Terns.
The second surprise was the number of White Pelicans there and Mary told us they had just arrived, all 200 of them! We managed to see 52 species and all contributed to our tally which was great. Some of the birds were as follows:
o Many Roseate Spoonbills well distributed around the ponds o Black-crowned Night Herons o Purple Gallinules o Bald Eagle o Many Wood Storks o Green Heron o All Egrets and Herons except Reddish Egret o Many Glossy Ibis with their deceptive green and bronze colors glowing o Black-bellied Whistling Ducks
The final surprise was a turquoise and black snake on the trail!
Another great day at Orlando Wetlands Park, Jim & Eileen
Both member photos by Thomas Gulley This field trip was a consolidation of CCAS & HAS members. There were too many to count. we sort of got spread out and were not too consolidated as a group. Nonetheless many good birds were seen. The start of Lust Rd offered up a female Painted Bunting. Photo by Ken Spilios. Ash-throated Flycatcher, Common Yellowthroat. The Krider's Red-tailed Hawk. Photo by Thomas Gulley.
The Gray-headed Swamphen wasn't as cooperative, but with a little perseverance Thomas Gulley got this shot.
The Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk also sat for us and gave us good poses . Photo by Thomas Gulley The Vermilion Flycatcher was a bit more elusive, but was seen by most as was a Yellow Warbler. The day turned out excellent and let us tally 63 species. The eBird list is here