Sunday 20 January 2013

Florida 19th November 2012

Another day in and around the Tallahassee area with Wakulla Springs State Park, Lake Munson, Maclay Gardens and Tall Timbers Research Station all visited. I was hoping to pick up a few more northerly based species in the area. The most productive site was Tall Timbers. I arrived at 1530hrs only to be told that it was closing at 1600hrs. I had no time to walk the trails but the area around the buildings was excellent with a lot of birds visiting a leaking water tap. I caught up with one of my highlights of the trip here - Red-headed Woodpecker, a cracking looking woodpecker especially in flight. There was a family party in the area which gave good views. Also coming to the tap were Eastern Bluebirds, Blue Jays, Chipping Sparrow and Purple Finches. Would have been great to have spent a lot more time here. I spent the last hour or two around a nearby lake walking along the shoreline in a large area of weed fields. I was looking for more sparrows and although there were dozens of Savanah and a handful of Swamp Sparrows there were no other species present. I was surprised not to have picked up any Song Sparrows at all on my trip. Even with seven species of sparrow for the trip I had missed some of the sparrow specialities despite trying several times such as Bachman's, Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed, Nelson's Sharp-tailed, Seaside, etc.
Once the last of the light was gone I made the long push back South and spent my last night in Florida in the not so glamorous area off the Interstate 75 near Ocala.

Hermit Thrush, the only Catharus to commonly winter in the States.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Red-headed Woodpecker

Adult and juvenile Red-headed Woodpecker, Blue Jays & Common Ground Dove in background.

Blue Jay
Wood Ducks

Manatee, honest!

Grey Squirrel

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