Although I rarely bring a camera on my morning walks around the neighborhood, I decided to lug the camera with the big birding lens one morning after seeing a nice variety of birds several days in a row. The light was excellent that morning, so there were good shots to be had. The warblers were active, especially the palm warblers that are plentiful this time of year.
There are almost always a few starlings hanging out in our trees. The birds are pests, but they do have beautiful coloring when the light hits them just right.
As I neared one of our ponds, a tri-colored heron swooped down and flew to the other side, where it undoubtedly felt safe from prying eyes.
At the next pond, a great egret waded about, searching for breakfast. I thought the whole scene was nice enough to capture, so I did.
Crossing our little bridge, I spotted a mockingbird on the railing, giving me a quizzical look.
Strolling down to our "beach" (a small sandy spot on Long Bayou), I encountered the juvenile little blue heron I see quite often all over the grounds. Little blues start out entirely white, then gradually gain a slate blue color as they mature. I think it usually takes more than a year for the color change to be complete. This one is just beginning to get its blue feathers, mostly around its head.
Cattle egrets are plentiful in the fields and pastures of Florida, but they also hang out in the vacant spaces of our development, eating insects they find in the grass. Being mostly a bland, less attractive member of the egret family, they gain some alluring color during their breeding season. This one is starting to get the golden orange breeding color on its head and chest.
Most mornings, I see three red-bellied woodpeckers clinging to one of several palm trees, or in one of the oaks on the property. On this morning, I saw only one busily pecking away at the nest it was creating in an oak tree.
Eagles are less common in our development, but at least six different ones have been visiting us this week. On the morning I had the camera, a mature pair roosted in a large pine tree, where I was able to get a few shots. The next day, with no camera, I saw four juveniles fly into the same tree and stay for a while.