Well, I just posted about finishing painting all the birds from the Merritt Island NWR bird checklist. Now I am going to share some photos from my last trip over there. Can you see why I love the place so much?
My favorite thing about Merritt Island right now is the Green Heron’s nesting in the mangroves. There are also Boat-tailed Grackle’s with chicks in the nest, and a pair of Eastern Kingbird’s building a nest last time I was there.
At this point you can see all ages of Green Heron’s there. Some are still sitting on the nest, others have little fuzzy heads poking out, while various sizes of chicks perch on branches.
Knowing I was getting out of work early today, all I could think about was finally getting in some bird watching time! So despite the dreary clouds looming overhead I got in my car and was off to Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, picked up breakfast at Sunrise Bread Co. and was on the beach by 10:30.
Found this beautiful Prairie Warbler on the dune.
Unfortunately, also discovered the return of mosquitoes. BIG TIME. Rushed back to car!
Great Blue Heron
Eventually it did start to rain… Black-necked Stilt. Love their legs.
Roseate Spoonbills in the rain.
What a great face!
I also saw a number of nests out there. Will definitely be back to check for chicks.
From Merritt Island last weekend…
American White Pelicans
Great White Heron
Great Blue Heron
Last weekend while birdwatching I saw two firsts, one was a Northern Gannet, the other a Sora. It’s easy for me to have firsts since I haven’t been birdwatching seriously (actually IDing birds) for very long. I think I may have been lucky to see the Sora though, as it was really hiding…
Others from the day…
Gorgeous thistles very busy with butterfly and bee action!
The birds are beautiful out in their breeding plumage. From Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge on Friday…
White Morph Great Blue Heron (Great Egret has black legs.)
Great Blue Heron…bad hair day?
Juvenile White Ibis
Friday night we had thunderstorms, followed by an incredibly windy Saturday, and a freezing cold Sunday. One of those days that while cold is bright and sunny and beautiful! A great day to be out. The birds, however, looked like they weren’t too happy about the temperature…
The coolest thing I saw was 100 or so American White Pelicans flying over. Seemed like they just kept on coming… such large and graceful birds.
The beauty of Merritt Island never fails! I can not tire of it. This week there was a new addition, a very large colony of Avocets. I love them, they are such elegant birds.
And then ducks, so many the water seems to be COVERED in feathers from their preening!
The Belted Kingfisher is one of the coolest looking birds, and no other birds look anything like it. They are common enough, but usually fly away from people pretty fast so I was really happy when this one posed for me!