Archive for February, 2010

Palma Sola Botanical Park

Red-bellied Woodpecker, originally uploaded by bmthomas.

The Palma Sola Botanical Park is right across the street from Robinson Preserve so there is no reason not to visit both. It is open daily from 8am until dusk- no entry fee!

Normally there are lots of flowers to photograph. Unfortunately they looked like maybe they had been affected by freezing weather.

So the birds are the other attraction. In just a short morning visit I saw cormorants, osprey, red bellied wood peckers, brown pelican, a hawk of some kind, blue-gray gnatcatchers wood storks, white ibis, moching birds, canada geese, coot, mallards, etc.

Well worth a visit or two. I always walk down in the morning any time I am visiting my parents.

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Robinson Preserve

Loggerhead Shrike

Originally uploaded by bmthomas

Just down the street from my parents house they have built a new 487-acre preserve. They are trying to return the land, shore, and marshes to a natural state. They have a lot of biking, walking, and paddling trails.

Robinson Preserve is located in northwestern Bradenton, in the Palma Sola area, across the street from the Palma Sola Botanical Gardens.

While visiting we saw a Loggerhead Shrike, egrets, ibis, vultures, osprey, little blue heron, great blue heron, redish egret, and an assortment of shore birds.

Redish Egret Redish Egret

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Felts Audubon Preserve

Bluebirds, originally uploaded by bmthomas.

Felts Audubon Preserve
4600 24th Avenue East
Palmetto, Florida

This was a rare treat for me. My mother had told me about Felts Audubon Preserve last year. Unfortunately it is only open the first Saturday of the month from 0800 to noon. This was the first time I had been around on the first Saturday of the month.The preserve is run by the Manatee County Audubon Society (http://www.manateeaudubon.org/felts.html). According to their pamphlets it consist of 27 acres and they have seen over 100 species of birds have been seen at the preserve.

We were the first to arrive. I highly recommend getting there early/first because it did get a little crowded.

We saw a number of small birds including Eastern Bluebirds, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Palm Warbler, Tufted Titmouse, American Kestrel, and a Wood Stork. When we arrived we saw a pair of mating Red-shouldered hawks. We saw these hawks repeatedly through out the day. According to locals they have seen owls and painted buntings. I was really hoping to get a good bluebird photo and to see a painted bunting but didn’t.

If you are in the area on the first Saturday or the month, I would highly recommend a visit.

Red Shouldered Hawk Red Shouldered Hawk

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I spent another week in Florida visiting my parents and haling my camera to local birding locals in February. Over the next few days (or weeks) I will upload a description of each local I visited and some of the highlights as well as photos.

While in Florida I went to the following birding hot spots:

Here is a map with some links of all the locals I went.


View SW Florida Birding in a larger map

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