Monday, March 10, 2008

An awsome day!

I don't usually use the word awesome, but that is the only adquate way to describe my day today. I went down to Venice to see a property that my friend has for sale. I was tooling along Tamiami Trail going about 55 mph when I spotted a pair of Sandhill Cranes in a slight gully along the shoulder of the road!! OMG! I couldn't believe my eyes!

Tempted to come to a screeching halt, I instead veered crazily across 2 lanes of traffic to make a u-turn and go back to get some pix.

Turns out that a little side road there leads into a residential neighborhood that is also a bird sanctuary (there are a lot of them down here). But this pair was right out in front of a small business building, completely unfazed by all the traffic whizzing by. I noticed that no one else seemed to take any notice of these two huge birds sedately foraging in the grass and roadside detritus.

This is a life bird for me...and totally unexpected. How lucky am I? I'm so tired right now that I am not going to post the rest of the 28 or so photos I took till tomorrow...except for this one - it's so cute! :)

Continuing on my way, I decided to check for backyard birds at the Sarasota Garden Club. No luck there with them, but I did happen to spy a Great White Egret roosting in a tree beside a pond.

After twisting and turning and scrunching around the tangle of brush neath the tree and avoiding a dunking in the pond, I was able to get more pix, like these:

As I was walking around looking for vantage points, what did I behold but a small dark figure lurking in the shadows.

This Green Heron was patiently fishing, and very tolerant of my snapping a bright light in his eyes over and over and over, and crunching dry leaves under my feet. All my activity didn't seem to scare the fish, though, as I saw him with tasty morsels several times.

Continuing my roundabout trek home, I headed down the Ringling Causeway, spanning Sarasota Bay, and stopped to check whether I would still find the rafts of Red-breasted Mergansers I had seen a couple of weeks ago (sans camera, drat it!). No such luck. Two were far out on the water, but I tried anyway, and the shots came out not so bad.

That's it for me tonight. Night all.

1 comment:

Owlman said...

Bird in Florida seem to be so used to people. Is it just because there are a lot of people around and great habitat for the birds? I saw Sandhill Crane in flight while doing in Fl - you're sighting is simply amazing! Through in a Heron and a Merganser and you're having a blockbuster day for sure.