Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Six Mile Cypress Slough and More

After Bill and Gail let me sleep in Sunday morning, we headed out to Six Mile Cypress Slough which was still quite dry despite the pounding rain we had the previous night.  It is a beautiful walk even though we don't see too much sometimes.

I did find out what my pretty wildflower was.  It is called a Button Bush and there was quite a bit of it in the swampy areas.  Here a Viceroy butterfly landed on it which made for a pretty picture.

We also encountered a new butterfly (to me) called a White Peacock -- looks like someone bleached a Buckeye to me!

After we walked through the Slough and saw many of our usual birds like the Anhingas, we headed back to the Metro Parkway site that had the big mud flat to see what was there this morning.

There were a lot more of the Black Necked Stilts there today and I liked this one where you can see his "grasshopper" like legs.

Here were two of them together on the small island.

There were still a lot of the White Pelicans there but a large flock took off shortly after we arrived.  After flying in circles for a bit, they headed up and up and floated on the thermals.  They don't look so white from this angle!

Uh Oh, another flower to identify!!  This was growing by the Metro location.

And yet another wildflower to identify.  This was at another site we visited which was evidently an abandoned housing project.  Everything seemed to be set up but there were no houses.

We saw a duck on shoreby one of the development's created lakes that we couldn't identify as there was a large branch right behind it and just too far away.  She later got into the water and we identified her as a female Red Breasted Merganser, fairly common around here.  There bill is unmistakable -- something like a ski jump!

A rear view of the same duck showing the wing coloring.

We were also on a mission to find a Cattle Egret showing their summer coloring.  This was taken from quite a distance but shows the brownish patches as well as the bright yellow bill.  Hopefully we will get a better one later!

After a casual dining lunch, we headed to Bunche Beach to see if we could see any shorebirds.  Unfortunately, the tide was so high and the surf so rough, there was very little beach and therefore no shorebirds at all!!  Bill is here auditioning his new tshirt -- think I might do his own personal tie dye for him!!

I might add we also headed over to Ft. Myers Beach to see if there were any Frigate birds (we had seen quite a few yesterday but no pictures).  Of course we didn't see any today but did sneak back to see if there were any Scarlet Ibis in a secret pond -- there wasn't.

You should all be amazed that I have any blogs at all as we have been very busy every day I have been here!!  Of course Bill cooks these wonderful meals at the end of the day as well.

Tomorrow I have to get up at 6 as we are heading to Harns Marsh in Lehigh Acres north of here.  This is where the Snail Kites and the apple snails are found and I always enjoy our walks here.  Bill and Gail have discovered a new spot here although we won't be taking the car there!!!  They had to be towed out of the sand last week.  Oops!

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