Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Birding Roundup: Corkscrew Swamp

Today's Florida adventure all started with this man:
This is Dr. Phil Hanna, and when I was meeting with him two weeks ago to discuss my upcoming rotation, I mentioned I was spending winter break in Florida. Upon hearing this, he leaned in close and said intensely, "Corkscrew Swamp. That's all you need to know."

So today we went to the swamp. Ever since I spent a semester studying abroad in New Zealand I have been hooked on nature walks and especially birding. South Florida is a paradise for birds and I was excited to check it out.

Armed with our binoculars, bird books and peanut butter cups, Sam, his grandma and I took off down the boardwalk. We saw an incredible number of birds I had never seen before, and some I had. Highlights include:
Black and White Warbler
and a Red-Shouldered Hawk.
Also added to my life list:
-Magnificent Frigatebird
-Little Blue Heron
-Great Egret
-Cattle Egret
-Black-crowned Night-Heron (so awesome!!)
-White Ibis
-Turkey Vulture (first time I've seen one landed on a branch)
-Osprey (holding a mouse!)
-White-tailed Kite
-Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
-Gray Catbird (hilarious call!)
-Pine Warbler
-Palm Warbler

-Painted Bunting (amazing!) [Photo Source]

Also seen around Florida:
-Brown Pelican
-Boat-tailed Grackle
-Cattle Egret
-Rock Pigeon

It was an awesome day! One of the funniest things we saw were tourists clamoring to take pictures of this little guy:
Funny because we have plenty of these in Michigan :)

I had a great time at the swamp today! Any other birders out there?

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