Pasco County, 3/10/2013

Red-breasted Merganser
This morning I birded West Pasco County with my new friend David Gagne.  We had a fantastic time. My biggest hope was to see a Seaside Sparrow, and we found at least one at Werner-Boyce Salt Springs State Park.  We heard several Clapper Rails, a Virginia Rail and a Sora.  We then went to the Gulf Harbors Golf course, which is now abandoned, we saw many ducks.  At least 600 Redheads were there and lots of Red-breasted Mergansers, including one adult male (the first adult male I've seen in Florida). We also saw my first Buffleheads of the year. We also found a Northern Shoveler, a Northern Pintail, a couple Ring-necked Ducks, some Lesser Scaup and one female Greater Scaup.

Red-breasted Merganser
On the way home (outside of Pasco Co) I saw the scene below--a Great Horned Owl that has taken over an Osprey nest.  Pretty fun to see.  So while it pays to keep your eyes on the road, it also can be nice to look up from time to time.

Great-horned Owl
(photographed pulled over in my car along the side of the road from a safe distance)


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