Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Wakodahatchee Wetlands

This morning we visited the Wakodahatchee Wetlands. It was warm and the Big Blue Herons were out in full force enjoying the beautiful weather. We saw another 10' + Alligator basking in the sun.

Blue Winged Teal

Great Blue Heron in flight
Anhinga basking in the sun
American Alligator

Alligator basking with a turtle roll call

Common Moorehen

Big Bertha

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Holey Lands WMA/SFWMD East Coast Buffer

Instead of traveling out of state for my vacation, we decided to do several day trips within the state of Florida. Last weekend, we visited Lake Okeechobee. It was peaceful and relaxing. Yesterday, we visited the South West section of Palm Beach County that is composed of Agricultural Land, Wildlife Management Areas, and portions of the South Florida Water Management Land. To most, this would be considered as a boring venture; however, this is an area of Florida that is left unappreciated. I lost count on how many Alligators and species of Birds of Prey that we observed. I really liked how quiet and isolated this area is, once you delve into its vast openness (venturing off of SR 27). I am definitely bringing my bike back to this area, as the paths are either closed to motorized vehicles or one needs a swamp buggy to gain complete access. Obviously, a bike will not endure the dense swamp areas, so I will stick to the dikes that offer an awesome view of area.

Its Duck and Deer season. The Ducks were everywhere! The SFWMD is a non hunting/fishing area.

An American Alligator basking amongst the Ducks.

Tricolored Heron
The Ducks are easily spooked.

Palmetto Palm Hammock

Big Bertha! This specimen appeared to be over 10 foot long.
Big Bertha is out of here!
River of Grass
Great Blue Heron
Dual-motored Airboat

Great Egret in mating plumage.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Lake Okeechobee

On 12/31/2010 and 01/01/2011, we took day trips to Lake Okeechobee. On 12/31/2010 we spent the day at the Pahokee Marina with Barbara. We spent most of the day observing the indigenous wildlife via binoculars. We enjoyed watching the Osprey catch and eat fish. The weather offered a pleasant break from the back-to-back arctic blasts that brought our temperatures to a unseasonably low for several days. On 01/01/2011, we spent the day at Taylor Creek with friends. We stopped at Port Mayaca on the way to the Creek. The tall bridge offers an awesome view of the lake and the surrounding area. We visited the dike area and went on a nice boat trip with John Ryan, Nicole, and Jeff. Unfortunately, most of the pictures did not come out to well. I had my Canon Powershot that I feel has been dropped one too many times.

Pahokee Marina

A victim of the arctic blasts
Port Mayaca

Taylor Creek