Local Birding 01/31/02
Out doing some local birding today, I found the following highlights:
Three male Painted Buntings & nine Indigo Buntings in various stages of
molt along with the usual White-winged Doves at my friend's Leon & Lois
White's feeders in Alva, (Lee Co.). The Pine Siskin that usually
accompanies the American Goldfinches was not seen yesterday or today. In
fact, the Am. Goldfinches have not been seen either day. The White's also
have a wintering juvenile Broad-winged Hawk in their yard/neighborhood. I
found Black-throated Green, Black-and-white, Yellow-rumped and
Yellow-throated Warblers in their backyard along with White-eyed and
Blue-headed Vireos and a Great Crested Flycatcher. Many Blue-gray
Gnatcatchers were also present. At the end of nearby Captain Nelson Ct.,
I saw a flock of over 100 American Robins. At the Caloosahatchee Regional
Park along S.R. 78 to the west of Alva, I had three Red-headed
Woodpeckers. This is one of the best places I know of in SW Florida to
see these birds. Further west of Alva, along the same road I saw a male
Northern Harrier and a pair of Sandhill Cranes along with many Glossy
Ibis in a small wetland in a cow pasture.
At the jct. of S.R. 78 & S.R. 31, I found one of the unbanded Florida
Scrub-Jays at the Babcock Ranch. This was the first time I saw a
scrub-jay there in over a month. I parked about 100 yards north on S.R.
31 near where the bee hives are and watched the Scub Oaks by the Babcock
sign. This is the best way I have found to see these birds.
At Eagle Lakes Community Park in Naples, in the mitigation impoundment
with the Bald Cypress trees, there were still at least a dozen Bronzed
Cowbirds and one male Shiny Cowbird in the mixed flock of blackbirds.
Late afternoon is best to find these birds. . . .
Along U.S. 41 (Tamiami Trail), 3.1 miles west of the junction of S.R. 29
& U.S. 41, on the south side of the highway, in a freshwater "pond", I
saw 15 breeding plumaged Roseate Spoonbills and one lone American White
Pelican. I struck out on the Barn Owl I had staked out on Birdon Rd. in
the Big Cypress National Preserve.