Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Merritt Island, 5/22/2012

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Black-necked Stilt
This morning I went to Merritt Island, and I had a pretty good morning.  We saw next to nothing at the Max Brewer Causeway, but from there we went to East Gator Creek and things started to pick up.   It was nice to see a Least Tern, and I never tire of photographing Black-necked Stilts and Reddish Egrets.

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Black-necked Stilts
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Reddish Egrets
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Least Tern
From there we went to Blackpoint Drive.  Easily the biggest highlight of the morning was seeing three Common Nighthawks chasing each other.  They were so fast, and we were in a car unable to follow them as they flew, so I have blurry photos of them up close, and relatively sharp images of them far away.  There were many Black-necked Stilts at their nests, and one Reddish Egret came a little too close to one, causing the stilts to jump into action to defend their nest--it was pretty fun to watch.  It was also nice to see a Semipalmated Plover up close walking on Blackpoint Drive. By the restrooms two immature Green Herons were out on the mangroves attracting the attention of all that came by.  And we also saw two Loggerhead Shrikes perched nearby their nest.

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Black-necked Stilt v. Reddish Egret

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Semipalmated Plover
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Common Nighthawk
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Tricolored Heron
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Green Heron
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Loggerhead Shrikes
Before heading home we went to Scrub Ridge Trail.  We saw 5 Florida Scrub Jays there, and likely we could have seen them all without even getting out of our car.  We also saw a couple Northern Flickers and and heard an Eastern Towhee.

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Florida Scrub Jay

2 comments:

  1. It is always wonderful to view your "Florida" birds Scott and this post has some of my favorites!

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  2. I'm happy to see the common nighthawk picture.  One year I was lucky enough to see (around 9-10 AM) the males doing their aerial display - they dive then their wings whir when they pull up out of the dive.  All the other pictures are great too, of course.

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