Birding in Florida

Last week I had fun visiting Honeymoon Beach on the Gulf Coast of Florida and Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge on the Atlantic side of Florida. I got to see lots and lots of different birds, both ones that I have seen before and lots of new ones. Below are the pictures of some of the birds I was able to capture with my camera. Sorry if some of them are blurry or out of focus, my camera could not zoom in as far as I needed to get a good picture, so some of the photos are taken through my binoculars.

IMG_8500Northern Mockingbird

IMG_8604American Kestrel

IMG_8602Osprey and nest. We saw lots of these guys and their nests during a hike at Honeymoon Beach.

IMG_8612Ring-billed gull

IMG_8625Laughing gull. In the winter, the laughing gull’s head is gray/white but in the summer, it’s black. These guys would do anything for food!

IMG_8677My favorite! The American Oystercatcher.

IMG_8685Distinguished by their drab gray color, the Willet is a very common Florida shore bird.

IMG_8706Sanderlings

IMG_8728This group of shore birds includes (from right to left) the laughing gull, the herring gull, and the royal tern.

IMG_8737A new shore bird for me was the Ruddy Turnstone.

IMG_8744Brown pelican

IMG_8755Great Egret. Saw lots of these guys along the side of the road!

IMG_8758Great Blue Heron

IMG_8820Boat-Tailed Grackle

IMG_8844Love the scenery in this photo along with the Roseate Spoonbills.

IMG_8872Painted Bunting

IMG_8875Gray Catbird

IMG_8880

IMG_8942American Coot. Probably saw more of this bird than any of the other birds combined!

IMG_8894From right to left: Glossy Ibis, Tri-colored Heron, and the Roseate Spoonbill.

IMG_8902Right to left: Tri-Colored Heron and the Snowy Egret.

IMG_8909The tall bird is a Wood Stork and the small white birds are one of my favorites, the White Ibis.

IMG_8931Reddish Egret. I loved spotting all the different types of herons and egrets.

IMG_8937Greater Scaup

IMG_8938You can tell the Northern Shoveler apart from most ducks by it’s long, flat bill.

IMG_8952Green Heron

IMG_8954Anhinga with a Pie-Billed Grebe in the background.

IMG_8958Pie-Billed Grebe

IMG_8966Double-Crested Cormorant. The crests on a Double-Crested Cormorant are only clearly visible during the mating season. One way to tell an anhinga and a cormorant apart is by their beaks. A cormorant’s beak is hooked at the end, and an anhinga’s beak is straight and spear-like.

IMG_8967Blue-Winged Teal

IMG_8971Common Moorhen. The Common Moorhen is similar in appearance to the American Coot except it has a more colorful body and a distinguishing red/orange beak and face.

IMG_8977White Pelicans

IMG_8994The Florida Scrub Jay joined us for a picnic lunch.

IMG_9011My favorite (just kidding!!!), the Black Vulture. He is pretty cool though!

Below are a few birds I was unable to identify. Do you have any guesses?

IMG_8813

IMG_8866

Hope you had as much fun looking at my pictures as I had taking them!

by Alexa

 

 

 

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3 thoughts on “Birding in Florida

  1. Thank you for clearing up the dilemma that I had – telling the difference between the cormorant and the anhinga. We had such a great time those two days! Saw so many birds and to think if it had been warmer, they might not have been out there as much. Guess we hit it just right. Wonderful pictures. Grampa especially enjoyed your comments….turkey vulture!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Last picture is a female painted bunting I think. No other small finch is all green. Very plain, greenish above paling to lemon-green below. That other bird on the car has me stumped! Can’t wait to hear what he is. Certainly was friendly.

    Liked by 1 person

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