Thursday, April 26, 2018

Crops & Clips: Parting shots

It is that in-between season in south Florida, after many winter visitors have departed and the mass arrival of northbound migrants is just starting. The weather has been that way as well, with summer-like days interrupted by chilly cold fronts. Warm lake water and cool morning air produce fog which softens the horizon and challenges my limited photography skills.

Looking west over the lake in the Wounded Wetlands, the morning sun tries to pierce the fog:

Fog lifting 01-20180418

In the dark rookery, a female Yellow-crowned Night-Heron incubates her clutch in a flimsy nest...

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron incubating position 12  20180415

...while her mate stands guard nearby:

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron imale on guard position 12  20180415

A second pair is still constructing their nest:

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron pair at Position 6 02-20180412

Unexpectedly, a crow-sized male Pileated Woodpecker flies in to forage on the ground beneath a Live Oak tree next to the rookery:

Pileated Woodpecker male 04-20180414

Pileated Woodpecker male 03-20180414

Pileated Woodpecker male 01-20180414

Back at the lake, the fog has not yet dissipated, so my photo of a Common Gallinule (which I hope will soon revert to its more appropriate name of Moorhen) is soft but pleasing:

Common Gallinule 20180414

The limited sunshine only provides a hint of the rich iridescence of the plumage of this male Boat-tailed Grackle:

Boat-tailed Grackle 01-20180414

The fog burns away and the air remains still. A Double-crested Cormorant, capturing the warm rays, reflects nicely on the smooth surface:

 Double-crested Cormorant 02-20180414

A flock of migrating Blue-winged Teal circles overhead:

Blue-winged Teal 02-20180414

Blue-winged Teal 03-20180414

They settle briefly on the lake:

Blue-winged Teal 04-20180414

A single Least Sandpiper, distinguished by its warm brown back and yellow legs, prefers to forage along the margins of the lake:

Least Sandpiper 01-20180417

I catch a close shot of a male Black-and-White Warbler, a species which winters here but whose numbers swell as migrants arrive:

Black-and-White Warbler 05-20180414

Typically, it probes the bark of the trunk and larger branches:

Black-and-White Warbler 02-20180414

Prairie Warblers are permanent residents, but they are migratory and it is likely that our winter birds hail from further north. One briefly perches out in the open:

Prairie Warbler 01-20180412

Prairie Warbler 02-20180412

Least terns have arrived on schedule, a sure sign that spring is here:

Least Tern 05-20180414

We do not see a flush of wildflowers in the spring. One subtle sign is the flower of the Pondapple:

Pondapple flower 01-20180414

This flower is tiny but quite beautiful. I am not sure of its identity, but it probably is that of a Common Myrtle:

Flower on tree 20180417

A bee-like Hoverfly species photobombs my session with the flower:

Hoverfly species 20180417

These are truly "parting shots," as we are migrating to our second home in NE Illinois for a short spell. The upper Midwest has suffered over two weeks of cold and snowy weather but we do expect a more pleasant break after we arrive.

= = =  = = =  = = = =  = = = = =

Linking to Misty's  CAMERA CRITTERS,

Linking to Eileen's SATURDAY'S CRITTERS,

Linking to SKYWATCH FRIDAY by Yogi, Sylvia and Sandy


Linking to BirdD'Pot by Anni

Linking to Our World Tuesday by Lady Fi

Linking to Wild Bird Wednesday by Stewart

Linking to Wordless Wednesday (on Tuesday) by NC Sue

Linking to ALL SEASONS by Jesh


Please visit the links to all these memes to see some excellent photos on display



  1. Very beautiful shots. The Teals in flight are winners!

  2. Those night herons are such incredibly beautiful birds. Wonderful photos!!

  3. Your photos show such beauty and detail. It is hard to pick a favorite, but I do like the Cormorant.

  4. Spectacular Photos. I especially like the pair of Herons facing different directions. And the soft colors of the first one are gorgeous.

  5. Wonderfulset of photos. I especailly like the Black-and-White Warbler, a bird totally inknown to me. Happy weekend Diane

  6. I love the fog shots andthe atmosphere it creates in the images. now those Night herons shots are superb also. I hope you have a wonderful weekend Kenneth.

  7. Wonderful walk -- the prairie warbler with its quizzical look is my favorite among favorites. I saw a pileated here in our resort yesterday! I never know if they just got here on migration or if they just show up because it gets so much quieter this time of year and during the season they're in hiding.

    Safe travels on your own migration!!

  8. A rosy shot to go with your blog's name. Pretty with all the fog. - Margy

  9. Hello, wonderful photos and post. Your bird photos are always amazing. Love the YC Night Herons and the Pileated. Nice walk and sightings. Thank you so much for linking up and sharing your post. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  10. Love the fog shot. Your sure found some wonderful birds to photograph and photograph very well, too. Beautiful pictures!

  11. If I had to choose two...the cormorant's reflection shading the water plants...and the black-and-white warbler. Two is insufficient, but they can't all be my favourites. Beautiful photographs!
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  12. That top image is so beautiful, the light is just stunning


  13. This may be the first post that I have seen that contains the words 'Florida' and "Chilly' at the same time!! Love those Pileated WPs - such a great bird.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  14. What a great selection of birds. I really like the Heron and the Tern.

  15. Safe travels!!

    LOVE the opening scenery! Wow, such a delicate light & so serene.

    LOVE TOO your birds & blooms. Now I have a question, speaking of gallinules/moorhens...have you ever seen an adult common gallinule (had adult red 'shield') that is mostly white? I spotted one with unusual coloring & at first thought it was a juvenile until I checked my guide books and online. Just curious.

    Thanks, as always, for linking up.

  16. Next to the excellent birder you must be, you're courageous in attempting different moods in your images! Love the dreaminess of the moorhen and next images. Also, your fist - it looks like a painting:):) Thank you Ken for sharing this with All Seasons. Have a great week!

  17. I didn't know that some bees have a pinkish tint to them. Nice. The fog gave your photos an interesting quality. Your landscape photo is amazing. So lyrical.
    The View from the Top of the Ladder

  18. Hi, Anni-- I could not find your e-mail address to respond to your comment about finding a partially white Common Moorhen. I have never seen one, so that is very interesting. I did search Google and foound many images which include the European Moorhen whch is very similar:
    Partial Albino Moorhen

    1. THANKS SO MUCH KEN, for your input on the moorhens (gallinule) today!! I've been thinking of contacting the Cornell Orinthology website contact list.

      This morning, I returned to the same area I spotted it & took a couple more photos (tho it was at a greater distance than last week). Once I get them off my camera card I wiil share the pics at I'd Rather B Birdin ... and look forward to your personal thoughts.

      again, thanks!

  19. What a beautiful collection of birds! I really loved seeing the black and white warbler and the prairie warbler. Gorgeous flowers also.

  20. I have never seen a yellow crowned night heron before.What a beauty. Just loved the woodpecker. Amazing captures.Throughly enjoyed your post!
    Greetings from Sydney and have a lovely day.

  21. Your photos are always amazing. Loved seeing all the beauties of the pond. Safe travels.

  22. A fabulous collection of photos. That moorhen looks as though he's sitting on a mirror.


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