This thunderstorm passed us to the SE, but briefly gave us winds strong enough to blow flying egrets backwards.
This daily visitor to our docklines has grown to tolerate us coming quite near while he fishes, but he is still wary- so we are careful to make no sudden moves.
A Tricolor heron perched on a dock line stops hunting to assess whether I am a threat or can be safely ignored. This compact predator is about 9 inches tall, unless he stretches out his neck, in which case he’s a little over a foot in height.
A male Eastern Tiger Swallowtail lights outside a dress shop in Uptown St. Augustine. He is about the size of your open palm. Females may also be yellow, but have an iridescent blue wash about their tails which the males lack. Females can also exhibit a protective dark coloration, which mimics the poisonous Pipevine Swallowtail.
Bad weather, looks to be coming fast. Already the wind is moaning in the rigging.
A red-winged blackbird sings his heart out from his perch atop the young cattail plants lining the San Sebastian river.
Mermaids are kind of a thing here in St. Augustine.
For the last few days, tree limbs have been full of large immobile dragonflies. Even when I shake the branches, they remain perched, motionless. It’s as if they’re on standby atop some alien insectoid flightdeck, awaiting instructions from Mission Control. Shiver.
This fenced-yard escapee appears both jubilant and triumphant after noisily rousting hunting spoonbills, egrets, and herons from the mudflats of the San Sebastian river.
This roseate spoonbill begins to fish before he has fully landed. Spoonbills use an odd “hoovering” method to hunt. It looks as if they are continually vacuuming the water in a semi-circle in front of themselves. This agitates the water and startles little minnows, who leap up and are caught. This churning technique appears to annoy the sedate great herons, who wait still as statues, never rippling the calm water until suddenly…they strike! I have seen herons flap away in disgust from a favorite fishing site when it is invaded by a hoovering spoonbill.