Friday, July 29, 2022

Blue Run Park is a little less 'WILD'!

We saw some news about Blue Run Park in Dunnellon but we hadn't had a chance to visit the park. 

Withlacoochee River

One early morning it was 'less hot' and it had rained the night before so we headed over there. 

the Swamp

And read the letters that stated some of the large alligators had been relocated!

We love our wildlife here in Florida but there was a huge alligator on the swamp side of the trail that was a little too close for comfort for us too. So I'm glad he got moved to a better location. Lots of people walk on this trail, including people with dogs and small children in tow. An alligator can move faster than we can get out of the way, so this was good news.

It was funny to see this huge turtle on the alligator log though.

Do you think he ATE the alligator and took over the log? 

Just kidding....just kidding!!!

And maybe the Wood ducks are missing the big alligator in their pond.

They found a log that looks very much like an alligator and started preening.

We love these beautiful ducks.

And don't forget....this is not scum or algae in the water.

 It is a plant called duckweed.

I hope you've had a chance to get out in nature even if it is just to walk around outside where you live. It's hot here so I make my hikes shorter but there's no way I can stay inside every day! 

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’.  

Monday, July 25, 2022

Felburn Park and the 'flying fish'!

When we drove to the Gulf Coast last week, we took our picnic lunch to Felburn Park. More info HERE.

It's a state park and one of our favorites here in Florida. 

And after we ate, we walked 
the trail to Phil's Lake.

 Then we spent some time looking out at the Cross Florida barge canal.

It was too hot to be out for very long. It was still in the 80s but the humidity was very high and there wasn't much of a breeze. No problem with bugs or flies here thankfully!

I'm generally a happy person and it's not unusual for me to laugh out loud.

And I had a lot to laugh about!

The Striped Mullet or "jumping mullet" were putting on a show.

More info HERE!

Hey! I think I see one over there!

And there's TWO!

It was funny to see them jump out of the water but it was just as funny to try to photograph them.

When you saw one jump, it was too late to focus in and take a shot.

So all of our photos were lucky shots!

We saw lots of beautiful wildflowers 

and this amazing Mississippi Kite!

Mississippi Kite perched in a tree.

And then we saw each other too. 
But don't ZOOM in so much! 
Give me a minute to 'strike a pose' next time! 

I'm joining Angie for Mosaic Monday HERE . 

I’m joining Thankful Thursdays and

I like Thursdays HERE too! 

Friday, July 22, 2022

Withlacoochee Bay Trail, buggy but beautiful!

 We've been anxious to drive back over to the Gulf Coast, weather permitting. It's been hot and humid and pop up showers are hard to predict. (and they usually come from the warm Gulf waters) 

So when we saw it would be low tide, we took a drive.
More chance of seeing shorebirds when there are exposed sandbars at low tide.

And the water was glassy and the views were amazing!

But there were deer flies buzzing all around. We didn't get a single bug bite but they were annoying to say the least!

Do you see the one that photobombed this photo? He was right on the lens of the camera for crying out loud!

But it was a good day for sightings!


Tricolored Heron and Great White Egret.

Are you following me?

The Heron just wanted to hang out with the Egret! 

And here's proof that the earth is FLAT!

Don't go out too far and fall off! lol

This Swallowtail Kite might take a photo of you and post it on his blog! hahahaha! Straight out of camera with his catch of the day!

He has his camera focused right on YOU!!!

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’.  

Monday, July 18, 2022

Slow hiking in the heat of the summer!

 I wanted to give these beautiful deer there very own post.

I parked at the Pruitt trailhead to hike the Halpata Tastanaki Preserve trail. There's a locked gate with a small opening so after I walk through that, I'm on an old roadbed. And later it is grassy but we won't get that far today. My hike was cut short because of a thunderstorm that was headed my way.

When I looked ahead at an old fence line with shade from huge Live Oak Trees, it looked like a goat standing there. 

I walked slow and steady hoping I wouldn't spook whatever it was.

And when I got closer, it looked like one of the deer was lying down, which is unusual.

One of the deer stayed in sight and the others went back into the tall grasses.

And just when I was zoomed in with my camera! 

I had another deer photobomb me! That gave me a start! 

This deer ran across the road right in front of me.

I didn't get to walk much farther before the one young deer decided I was close enough and the lady in the pink cap might indeed be a threat. So he bounded off too. But it sure was a neat sighting.

I walked far enough to look out at the preserve and take a few wildflower photos. And then I walked at a faster pace to get back to the Jeep and come home. But I sure felt exhilarated after such a neat sighting!

St. John's Wort with a tiny insect

We've had more pop up rain showers but we've also found a few openings to get out on the trails! I hope you have too!

I’m joining Thankful Thursdays and

I like Thursdays HERE too! 

Friday, July 15, 2022

Florida summers - July sightings

 It's been too hot to get many hikes in this month but it's always a good month for the birds.

I packed a picnic lunch and drove over to Pruitt one day. There are 2 trailheads there and quite a lot you can see from the Jeep.

I took a short hike on the Halpata Tastanaki Preserve trail but my hike was cut short by lightening in the distance. Florida is flat so you can see for quite a distance but it looked like the clouds and storm were headed my way. So I got back to the Jeep and decided to leave. I did get a few sprinkles of rain on the way back. It's only 10 miles away and the pop up showers are usually very isolated. It had rained harder at my house while I was gone.

I saw quite a lot on that short hike though so let's see what we have. 

Red Shouldered Hawk (looks like a young one)

Do you see him on the post? 

I rolled my window down and took these from the Jeep! 

White Eyed Vireo

Eastern Meadowlark.

And a Loggerhead Shrike.

I also saw a beautiful herd of deer but I think I'll save those for another day.

There are still so many wildflowers in bloom! Lots of bees and butterflies. 

Gulf Fritillary on Stinging Nettle

I was glad I drove over there to spend some time in nature. I always have a good day when some of it is spent in the great outdoors. Do you feel the same way?

I’m joining Saturday’s critters HERE

and I’d Rather B Birdin’.