The rainy season has now extended through the entire month of December into early January. It produces glorious sunrises over the ocean, 18 miles to the east, but also limits our time afield. This was the view from our back patio on the morning of December 28.
Late in the afternoon two days earlier, this full rainbow was a celestial delight.
Soon after the rain stopped, the colors of the sunset reflected on the lingering clouds to the east. I took these panoramic photos with my iPhone camera.
Morning dew on spider silk provided unexpected color.
High water in the wetlands has driven the White-tailed Deer to browse along the levees and roadways. While we normally are lucky to even see a deer, there have been as many as six at a time.
A Northern Cardinal glowed in the morning light.
The subtle plumage of a Yellow-rumped Warbler contrasted with the Brazilian Pepper berries.
I expected this photo of a Northern Mockingbird to turn out badly because the bird was in deep shade, but it posed nicely and the cool light enriched its gray plumage.
A Gray Catbird, another monochromatic subject, flashed it rufous undertail coverts.
Two Northern Flickers, in a hostile confrontation, displayed their yellow undertails.
This photo was spoiled by the cable, but it also shows the flicker's gilded underwings.
On the day before Christmas, an immature Yellow-bellied Sapsucker appeared on our only native back yard tree, a mahogany. I took its picture through the window. It drilled neat lines of holes, encircling the trunk, and has returned every day since to drink the sap and eat the insects attracted by it. This is a new yard bird for us. Its plumage hints at the rich reds and yellows that are only starting to emerge. If it stays, perhaps we will be lucky enough to see it in living color!
The sapsucker's cousin, a Red-bellied Woodpecker, stopped long enough to show off its adult plumage.
Our local Bald Eagles have egg(s) in their nest with an expected hatch date of January 12. Here the female eagle takes a break after her mate assumed incubation duties.
Not to be outdone by the birds, a Southern Ring-necked Snake played dead when I cornered it on the sidewalk near the entrance to our local wetlands. Its orange and red undersides may deter or confuse predators. Interestingly, though it remained immobile when I picked it up, it always slowly turned belly-up and moved its head into the shade of its coils after I put it down. It came to "life" as soon as I retreated a comfortable distance.
The red dewlap of a Brown Anole caught my eye.
Butterflies and flowers lend their color. Here a Long-tailed Skipper feeds on a Lantana flower.
A contradiction in terms, a male Queen butterfly contrasts with a white flower.
The White Peacock, true to its name, reflects all the colors.