Saturday, January 22, 2011

Florida Day 1 and 2, January 9-10

Black Vulture, Green Cay Wetlands, January 9, 2011
Mottled Duck, Green Cay Wetlands, January 9, 2011
Great Egret catching fish, Green Cay Wetlands, January 9, 2011

We arrived in sunny Florida after a slight delay due to snow. We spent these two days near Boynton Beach and visited Green Cay Wetlands and Loxahatchee NWR. Green Cay is a great spot most any time of day as the birds have little fear of people and the boardwalks allow for close of views. I ran into another western Mass birder within the first few minutes at Green Cay. The first day at Green Cay turned up some nice warblers including Northern Parula, Black and White, Prairie as well as Palm, Pine and Yellow-rumped. There was also a nice selection of ducks and waders plus a few Sora. Various raptors came and went. The Painted Bunting show was impressive with up to eight present at once, including three males. Other birds of note here included a Brown Thrasher poking under a feeder and a flyby Sandhill Crane. At dawn on the 10th I arrived at Loxahatchee to witness the fly out of waders at dawn. Its always impressive to see this as the sun rises and the birds disperse to feeding areas. The largest representation came from White Ibis that numbered into the several hundred. In addition I had some great views of a banded Snail Kite in the far cells at Loxahatchee and managed some marginal photos.

Snail Kite, Loxahatchee NWR, January 10,2011
Black and White Warbler, Green Cay Wetlands, January 10, 2011

After another trip to Green Cay we began the drive across Alligator Alley to Sanibel Island and J.N. Darling NWR arriving early afternoon. After a trip around the wildlife drive we made it out to the beach to finish the day.

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