The Transcript: Welcome to Sweetwater Wetlands Park in Gainesville, Florida. This marshland park is dotted with overlooks. Let’s see what we find. This young Common Gallinule is nearly grown. Although gallinules may occasionally eat insects or snails, they’re primarily herbivores. This bird is managing the habitat by consuming Hydrilla verticillata, an Asian plant sold toContinue reading “Hatchling Season at Sweetwater Wetlands”
The Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus) is one of my favorites to watch, particularly during breeding season. This is when pairs circle together, heavily‑banded feathers stretched wide. The Red-shouldered prefers mature forest adjoining small areas of open land. My own neighborhood adjoins a section of forest, and Red-shouldereds routinely fly through the closely packed trunks andContinue reading “Red-shouldered Hawks – Monogamous and Opportunistic Florida Residents”
Recorded at Tillie K. Fowler Regional Park, Jacksonville, FL (7000 Roosevelt Boulevard) Transcript: That was an unusual experience. I’m near the junction of the [second] spur trail and, to my right, maybe 10-15 feet away, a wild turkey was sleeping in the sun. And it was just dozing. And when it realized I was here,Continue reading “Turkey on the trail”
Although Black vultures feed on carrion, they also hunt slow, injured, or newly-born animals. I once saw three vultures surround a large pond turtle, which strayed too far from the water. First they ripped off its legs, and then they devoured the body. I’ve also seen them loiter around a doe and her newly-born fawn,Continue reading “Black Vultures: Clever Carrion-eaters and Hunters”
In spring, Wood Storks, Great Egrets, and Black-crowned Night-Herons nest in the mature oaks and bamboo stands of Jacksonville Zoo (370 Zoo Parkway), so be sure to take binoculars while visiting. Black Vultures can also be seen year-round.
The bird in the foreground is a Cardinal. Someone once described it to me as sounding like a ray gun. In the background, a White-eyed Vireo is also heard. The remaining background calls are made by another Cardinal and a Carolina Wren, which sometimes sound like a car alarm. Photo by theSOARnet with Pixabay
Where is it? There are two trailheads a few miles apart. The trailhead for hiking is at: 11101 Millhopper Road, Gainesville, FL.The trailhead for equestrian and bike use is at: 13201 Progress Blvd., Alachua, FL. Note that bicycles and horses are not allowed on the hiking trails. Likewise, hikers are not permitted on the bicycleContinue reading “Trails at San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park”
Sometimes I like to stand on the trail and just listen. You’re invited to join me in a two-minute meditation. Audio (c) Carol Fullerton-Samsel 2021
I glanced at the weather app over breakfast. The morning would be in the mid-70s (around 24 C), and no rain until eleven. Partly sunny. A perfect morning to go birding. I raced through my chores and then headed toward Big Talbot Island in Jacksonville, Florida. A cool breeze met me as I stepped outContinue reading “Flooding at Big Talbot Island”
The birds seemed unusually skittish. So I turned my attention to smaller creatures.