This morning my son had a 9am appointment in Sanford, and I had a work obligation in Orlando at 2pm.
Not wanting to risk something going wrong, I decided to stay local and bird my way from Sanford to Orlando.
I first went to Spring Hammock Preserve, hoping for a Prothonotary Warbler and Northern Waterthrush. I succeeded with the latter but not with the former.
The place was also loaded with Northern Parula and Red-eyed Vireos; I heard both frequently all long the trail. On the way back I came across a butterfly that I later identified as a Hackberry Emperor.
From there I went to Central Winds park, hoping for a Prothonotary Warbler. No luck there, and in fact, there wasn’t much at all to speak of there, but there was a Lesser Scaup by the shore of Lake Jesup. Most of the rest of the ducks have moved on; I’m not sure why this one has stayed so long.
From there I drove down to Mead Gardens, which has been quite a hot spot for migrants the last few days. I found one American Redstart, which I was hoping to find, but I think I was more excited to see a Rat Snake climbing a tree by the pavilion. There’s also a family of four Barred Owls here, and I’ve seen both parents before this year, but today I had my first look at the two fledglings. They’re still pretty adorable.