~Ring-billed Gull and Friends~

a stroll 

on the beach

never disappoints

intensifies the senses

hearing, smell

touch and sight

a delight

Ring-billed Gull and a Ruddy Turnstone

Ring-billed Gull and a Ruddy Turnstone (winter)

"No Chance"

“No Chance”

"I'am outta here"

“I’am outta here”

Mine, mine no mine!

Mine, mine no mine!

Ring-billed Gull, first winter

Ring-billed Gull, first winter

 Until next time…

"Come soar with me!"

“Come soar with me!”

Sharing with Stewart at Wednesday’s Wild Bird

http://paying-ready-attention-gallery.blogspot.com/2015/01/wild-bird-wednesday-133-sooty.html

and

Michelle at Nature Notes

http://ramblingwoods.com/2015/01/26/nature-notes-297we-as-humans-have-created-pretty-much-the-perfect-habitat-for-deer-said-cornell-universitys-jay-boulanger/

 

~Great Black-backed Gull~

prints in the sand

gives a hint of what I am

two legged or four

may reveal shape, size, weight

who I am, remains a secret

Gull prints in the sand

Prints in the sand 

Fishing, a common bond

Fishing, a common bond

Great Black-backed gull

Great Black-backed gull

There is no mistaking the identity of this gull, it is the largest in the world. It stands about 16 to 32 inches and weights about 64oz. Leg color, pale pink; eye color, pale yellow; bill color, yellow with red on lower mandible; back and wings, black.

The gull, in my photos above, is at least four years old, because it takes that long for it to transition to the dark, black back.

The Great Black-backed Gull is one of many bird species whose feathers were used for fashionable clothing in the 1800s. After the demise of the feather trade in the early 1900s, Great Black-backed Gull populations increased and spread farther south. Garbage dumps and other sources of human refuse have contributed to their range expansion.

 

Sharing with Eileen at Paying-Redy-Attention; Saturday’s Critters http://viewingnaturewitheileen.blogspot.com/2015/01/saturdays-critters-58.html

 

Until next time…

Follow my Prints

Follow my Prints

 

~An Old Barbed Wire Fence~

Theresa, I am so excited to share a “Good Fence” post. I took these photos Sunday at Jonathan Dickinson State Park near Hobe Sound, Florida.

It looks like a very old barbed wire fence. Sitting proudly on the fence post is a Loggerhead Shrike.

Loggerhead Shrike

Loggerhead Shrike

 

IMG_2476

Sharing with Theresa at Good Fences

http://run-a-roundranch.blogspot.ca/2015/01/good-fences-44.html

Until next time…

An old barbed-wire fence

An old barbed-wire fence

~Bird Life at the Beach-Sanderling~

Sanderling are tiny little beings, some just call them “peeps”,

seen running on the beach, toward the rolling surf,

feeding in the seconds, before a breaking wave, 

then retreating fast, toward the shore,

living in the pull, of the seas’ ebb and flow,

surviving the hardships of their life’s dance,

 usually not given a second glance.

Sanderling

Sanderling

The waves go out; time to eat.

feeding in the seconds, before a breaking wave

Waves roll in, time to run.

then retreating fast, toward the shore

surviving the hardships of their life's dance

surviving the hardships of their life’s dance

 

Sharing with Stewart at Wild Bird Wednesday

http://paying-ready-attention-gallery.blogspot.com/2015/01/wild-bird-wednesday-132-willie-wagtail.html

 

Until next time…

 

~Bird Life at the Beach-Royal Tern~

Hobe  Sound, Florida Beach

Hobe Sound, Florida Beach

A few days ago, I spent a few hours walking on the beach at Hobe Sound, Florida. I  couldn’t wait to sink my toes into the warm sand.

Happiness is feeling the ocean breeze on my skin; the sight of the sky, water and sand as they kiss each other in harmony; and observing the gorgeous shore birds as they search for food fighting against the power of this environment.

We have arrived back on the east coast of Florida staying at Jonathan Dickinson State Park near Hobe Sound, Florida. The beach at Hobe Sound is only four miles away from camp and I look forward to many more beach treks.

"You ate that already?"

“You ate that already?”

"Now you want more?"

“Now you want more?”

This Royal Tern said, "who put this thing on my leg?"

This Royal Tern said, “who put this thing on my leg?”

Mesmerized

Mesmerized

 

While hiking in Jonathan, I have had the pleasure of seeing the beautiful Florida Scrub Jay!

Coming up next…

Great Black Backed Gull, Ring Billed Gull, Willet, Sanderling, Ruddy Turnstone and more

 

Sharing with:

Michelle at Rambling Woods, Nature Notes

http://ramblingwoods.com/2015/01/19/nature-notes-296/ 

 

~A Partnership~

Big Bend Power Station, Tampa Bay

Big Bend Power Station, Tampa Bay

Recently our friends took us to visit the Big Bend Power Station with the hope of seeing Manatee. We were all camped at Alafia River State Park in Lithia, Florida, which isn’t too far from the Big Bend Power Station.

Big Bend Power Station is location on Tampa Bay near Apollo Beach and covers more than 1,500 acres. This power station has four coal-fired units with a combined output of more than 1,700 megawatts and meets strict environmental regulations through the use of flue gas desulfurization systems or “scrubbers”, which remove sulfur dioxide produced when coal is burned. (some info taken from the web-sites mentioned here)

You can read about Big Bend Power Station here: http://www.tampaelectric.com/company/mvc/index.cfm?link=banner&source=hp&q=tampa+electric

IMG_2380

Manatee enjoying the warm canal water

Beginning around 1986 people started seeing Manatee, in large numbers, in the power station’s discharge canal, where saltwater – taken from Tampa Bay to cool Unit 4 – flowed, clean and warm, back to the bay. When Tampa Bay reached 68 degrees or colder, the mammals would seek out this new refuge.

 The Manatee Viewing Center was soon born. Today, Big Bend’s discharge canal is a state and federally designated Manatee sanctuary that provides critical protection from the cold for these unique, gentle animals.

You can read about the Manatee Viewing Center (MCV) here: http://www.tampaelectric.com/company/mvc/index.cfm?link=banner&source=hp&q=tampa+electric

IMG_2371

Because it was cloudy we didn’t get the best view of these Manatee, but we had a fun time anyway!

 

_MG_3841

An Artsy view

It was very exciting for me to witness the results of a partnership, between the Tampa Electric Company and others, and the need to protect the wildlife that visits this area, especially the Manatee. 

I believe they are doing an outstanding job in meeting the power needs of people working and living in and around Tampa, while providing a safe environment for these mammals during the winter months.

_MG_3833

Hundreds of Manatee take refuge from the cold at this sanctuary.

 

Located on site at the Manatee Viewing Center, is an environmental education building that provides a place to learn about the Manatee and also about how power is generated.

"Why don't you come on over for a visit?"

“Why don’t you come on over for a visit?”

~Osprey~

Soaring, among the clouds,

riding, wind currants higher and higher,

circling, looking for prey,

gliding, enjoying the hunt,

diving, for the kill.

Soaring

Soaring

Photo taken at The Celery Fields in Sarasota, Florida

 

Lunch time

Lunch time

"Why are you watching me eat my lunch?"

“Why are you watching me eat my lunch?”

"I'am not sharing!"

“I’am not sharing!”

Photos taken near Rainbow Springs State Park in Dunnellon, Florida

 

Nice catch!

Nice catch!

Photo taken Fort De Soto County Park in Tierra Verde, Florida

 

Sharing with Michelle at Nature’s Notes

http://ramblingwoods.com/2015/01/12/nature-notes-294will-my-grandson-ever-be-able-to-help-me-raise-monarch-butterflies/