Monday, July 7, 2008

Just Another Evening at St. Marks

We had read on a blog that there were spoonbills at the lighthouse. Spoonbills! We love spoonbills and they are uncommon here. The radar showed no rain in that direction and the rain around here had cooled the air to something more livable so we decided to make an afternoon run down there. We had not been in over 6 weeks so we could rationalize the gas money. We could take the Camry, but the truck sits so high and has large windows and you can see SO much more as you drive that we always take it, even though the gas mileage is not as good.

We did not see spoonbills. But here are a few interesting observations:

The new dikes are working and there is now water where it had once been and then had dried up.

B identified the blood red water in one of the canals as an algae bloom. It was very odd.

There were many white wading birds. I experimented with the continuous shutter on my camera for the first time and ended up with many shots of this great egret.

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Lots of boaters were out, as evidenced by the number of trailers in the parking lot. (Scallop season began on the first of July and this is a popular spot for that.)

A trek down the path around the lighthouse to the beach on the east side brought us to a sign that notified us that the area was closed because it is an ecologically sensitive area. Bummer. It was a nice spot to just cruise and observe fiddler crabs, etc. Perhaps it will be open again after some bird finishes nesting. Let's hope.

We only saw 3 or 4 alligators and none of them were especially large.

We saw a large, untidy V of brown pelicans. Counting here, it looks like about 75 birds were heading back to the coast from somewhere.

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When we were driving back out, there were two deer fairly close to the road. The buck was the first one I saw and neither of us was ready for the encounter. (The picture is fuzzy.) He had wonderful velvet antlers.

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He decided to play hide and seek.

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And at some point, he remembered he was hungry.

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And that was when we saw the doe.

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They continued to graze with their tails to us, unconcerned, until we finally left to find our own grazing spot for supper.

1 comment:

wlhawh said...

Those are very good shots. I love the Buck playing hide and seak.