16 August 2005

Ding Darling birds

If you are ever in the Ft. Myers area in Florida, leave some time aside to visit the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island. And when you are at the Refuge, instead of driving around, I recommend that you hike the approximately 4-mile Indigo trail if you want to see more of the wildlife. I did the hike last July on a very hot day, but it was worth it.

I noticed that the birds were usually tamer than the same or the related species I had seen elsewhere. The great egret (Ardea alba, left) and the little blue heron (Egretta caerulea, right) would rather keep their eyes on the things moving in the water than on a tourist with a camera. Even the red-shouldered hawk (Buteo lineatus, below, left) let me approach the tree it was perched on before it flew away.

The snowy egret (Egretta thula, above, right) too tolerated me for a few shots (with the camera) before it took off trailing its yellow feet behind.


Rexroth's Daughter said...

Just got here from I and the Bird. Love your photography. We've gotten pretty close to herons, but never that close to a hawk. Nice.

TroutGrrrl said...

Very nice post and pictures. I've wanted to visit Sanibel Island but have never managed to sneak it in. Thanks for the reminder...