Central Florida Birding, 4/6/2013

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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.

Northern Parula

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.

Lesser Scaup

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.


Barred Owl

Rat Snake

Scott Simmons

Scott Simmons

Scott Simmons, based in Florida, is a lover of nature, landscape, and wildlife photography. Scott became interested in photography in 2001 when he was given his first SLR camera. When he acquired a telephoto lens, he became progressively more interested in birds and other wildlife. Scott enjoys learning about bird habitats and behavior, striving always to take images that are both beautiful and interpretive. Scott believes photography is a great vehicle to help others to appreciate the wonder for the stuff of earth.

Scott Simmons

Scott Simmons

Scott Simmons, based in Florida, is a lover of nature, landscape, and wildlife photography. Scott became interested in photography in 2001 when he was given his first SLR camera. When he acquired a telephoto lens, he became progressively more interested in birds and other wildlife. Scott enjoys learning about bird habitats and behavior, striving always to take images that are both beautiful and interpretive. Scott believes photography is a great vehicle to help others to appreciate the wonder for the stuff of earth.

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Susan Lee

The northern parula looks very much like a small yellow bird I’d seen high up in the limbs of a 280-yr-old Live Oak on my own Northwest Florida property last year. I was looking up at it and barely made out a light-olive-ish upper-body, but the bright pale yellow of it stayed with me. Started me thinking of Arthur Lymon’s “Yellow Bird” music 🙂