Sunday, May 29, 2011

I-75 Sunset

Sunset over the Peace River, Punta Gorda, Florida
I-75 is a wonderful highway from Hialeah, Florida all the way to Ontario, Canada.  Lots of beautiful scenery along the way.  Slow down and enjoy some.

Late Afternoon Landscapes: Shell Creek, Florida

These landscapes were taken along 
Shell Creek, in Hathaway Park, Punta Gorda, Florida.







Thursday, May 26, 2011

Urban Photo Walk, Kings Highway, Port Charlotte, Florida

Mottled Duck (Anas fulvigula) and ten ducklings!
With a bit of time to spare on a recent afternoon, I took my camera and went for a walk along one of the busiest roads in Port Charlotte, Florida...Kings Highway.  This connector goes all the way from Charlotte Harbor to Arcadia, with much of it bordered by storm water catch basins and nice sidewalks.  A perfect place to see some of our natural world thriving in this urban environment.



It's late spring, so there are lots of "chicks" and juvenile birds around.

Yellow Crowned Night Heron, juvenile (Nytanassa violacea).

I had a pleasant walk, got some nice photos, and really became aware of the world close to home.

Southern Lubber Grasshopper, juvenile (Romalea guttata).



These catch basins are vital during our rainy season and in the event of troprical storms.  The water levels here are quite low as we are just finishing the dry winter/early spring.


Boat-Tailed Grackle (Quiscalus major).  Male.

Boat-Tailed Grackle.  Female.

This is actually a very busy and developed business area.

White Peacock (Anartia jatrophae).

Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus).

Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus).


Juvenile Moorhen with Mother.

Water Hemlock (Cicula maculata).

Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor).  Female.


Great Egret (Ardea alba).

Cabbage Palms (Sabal palmetto).



Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias).


National Audubon Society Field Guide to Florida

Dragonhunter (Hagenius brevistylus).

There they go, back the other way.  Still ten ducklings!
You don't have to go far afield here in Gulf Coast Florida.
Pay us a visit, soon.





Sunday, May 22, 2011

Blue Hour on the Peace River.

L'Heure bleue on the Peace River, Harbour Heights, Florida.  That magic time that nature gives photographers.  Not yet night, yet no longer day.


Looking east at sunset is sometimes as beautiful as looking west.

Blue sky, blue water.


Almost like an impressionist painting.


Less is more in this shot.


Serene and relaxing.
I love my Nikon D3000 with 18-55mm VR lens for landscapes.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Cayo Costa....Unspoiled Island Park

Cayo Costa State Park is a 2426 acre barrier island off the Gulf Coast of Florida, between Boca Grande Pass and Captiva Pass.

Not my photo!  But, it shows the 9 miles of pristine beaches.

You can only get to Cayo Costa by boat, either private or by ferry from Pine Island, or by tour boat from Punta Gorda.  Here is the Island Star out of Punta Gorda (and part of the Kingfisher Fleet) off loading at the park dock.
On the trip over you are likely to see dolphins, and if you are lucky, a Magnificent Frigate bird (Frigata magnificens)!
Park facilities include dockage, rest rooms, primitive cabins and campsites.
The beaches are groomed only by Mother Nature.

Shore birds love Cayo Costa too!  Here are some White Ibis (Eucocimus alba) practicing their close order drill (that's an echelon left maneuver).

Here's the view looking north across the Boca Grande Pass to Gasparilla Island.  The BG Pass offers the best Tarpon fishing in the world.

More marching Ibis!

No gift shops, no hot dog stands, no worry about parking your car...you can just anchor off the beach.

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) fishing.

Perfect for snorkling.  But, keep a sharp eye out for sharks....BG Pass is also home to some huge hammerheads.

Ruddy Turnstones (Arenaria intaerpres).


Shelling and beachcombing is great fun.  Horseshoe Crab (Limulus polyphenmus) here.

c
Willet (Catoptrophorus semipalmatus)

Ruddy Turnstone in flight.


Sanderling (Calidris alba).


Great day at the beach!