We have missed a few morning walks due to weather, medical appointments and the weekly early morning grocery curbside pickup. Photo opportunities are limited because we walk out into the wetlands in the dark, an hour before sunrise.
The dark sky was an interesting backdrop for these flash photos of a Northern Flicker in a Maple tree along the trail:
A similar opportunity occurred earlier this year with a male Northern Cardinal:
So far this autumn there were no unexpected sightings, but it was nice welcoming back some migrants and winter residents. Palm Warblers have arrived in good numbers. Many of these little tail-waggers will stay here until spring, populating residential lawns and gaining the nickname of "Florida Sparrows:"
Most of the Palm Warblers are from the drab-plumage western population, which migrate in a southeasterly direction and cross migration routes of the eastern birds, most of which spend the winter to the west of Florida. Those from the northeast are more brightly colored. Here is an eastern "Yellow Palm Warbler" which I photographed locally back in February, 2020. Its undersides are entirely yellow with reddish streaks and it has a chestnut-colored cap:
I never pass by an opportunity to get a photo of a Yellow-throated Warbler. They are quite solitary and it is unusual to find more than one at a time:
Common Yellowthroats, reclusive little pot-bellied birds, are warblers which nest locally but whose numbers are greatly augmented by southbound visitors. The adult male has a black face mask and bright reddish brown cap:
Immature male yellowthroats will have full dark masks by springtime...
Many Black-throated Blue Warblers have arrived. These are enjoying the berries of Trema trees near the Bald Eagle nest. This is a male:
After most disappeared in early spring to nest in coastal mangroves, the Prairie Warblers are back:
Perky Blue-gray Gnatcatchers can be distractions as they actively move through the trees and we try to distinguish between them and the warblers which are frquently their traveling companions:
Other arrivals included...
Ruby-throated Hummingbird (with its beak coated with pollen)...
...Eastern Phoebe (Its bright yellow undersides will bleach into white before it returns north in the spring)...
...and another flycatcher, the Eastern Wood-Pewee, which differs from the phoebe by having wing bars and eye rings:
A half hour before sunrise, this is a view from the Levee Trail of the "civilized" opposite side of the canal:
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Fences Around the World
Wordless Wednesday (on Tuesday)
Our World Tuesday
Please visit the links to all these posts to see some excellent photos on display