Sunday, January 12, 2014

Florida Everglades 2014 - Day 6

I believe there are about 15 parrot species in the Miami area that we have the opportunity to find.  So, today, we went back to Miami Springs to try and get more parrots.  The weather was not cooperating this morning, and we began our parrot search in light rain.

We whiffed on parrots.  Not a sound to be heard.  So, we decided to head over to Key Biscayne and see if we could find any shorebirds.  First stop was Crandon Park, where we walked out onto the beach.

We picked up some good shorebirds, including: Sanderlings, Piping Plovers

and Wilson's Plover.

It was pretty chilly on the beach, so we took a stroll through the gardens in the park.  Egyptian Geese are everywhere.

We were really surprised to see this Sandhill Crane!

The Crandon Gardens are in an area that used to be a zoo.  But, the zoo was demolished when a hurricane came through and many of the animals were released.  Now the area is just ponds,

and trails.  There are several peacocks on the grounds

and we saw a Wild Turkey!  How weird is that?!

We did pick up this little Florida Prairie Warbler.

I did almost wet myself when I came around a bend in the path and almost walked up on these two guys!  Freaked me out!

It wasn't until Bobert joined me and looked at them that I learned that they were fake!  OMG!

After lunch at a nice Italian place in town, we headed down to Bill Baggs State Park at the south end of the Key.

You can tell from this photo just how cloudy/rainy/windy it was!

This park includes 7 houses that you can rent that are located offshore on stilts!  Now that would be cool!

It started raining pretty hard, so we decided to use our time wisely and drive down to Homestead to the Biscayne National Park and pick up a stamp for my National Parks Passport.

The weather was awful.  Pouring rain, gale force winds, and obviously, no birds.  One of the Rangers in the visitor's center told us that if we walked 3/4 of a mile down the canal by the driveway that we had a pretty good chance of seeing some manatees.  So, off we went.  Half way down, I was soaked and chilled to the core and told Dave that I'd had enough.  I should know better.  Because, every time I do that, he says, "Ok, stay put, and I'll just go check over here."  Wouldn't you know, not 2 minutes later, he was waving his arms to get us to come to where he was.  There in the water, were 4 manatees! Unbelievable!

So, even though the weather was really crappy, and the traffic in Miami is unbearable, we did manage to add some new birds to our list.  We are now at 127 birds for the trip.

No comments: