Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring in the South

Mocking Bird

I know I haven't posted many blog posts in the last few weeks, but wanted to let you know that I really appreciate all my readers and followers. I'm very thankful for your loyalty in reading my blog posts, as well as your comments and "likes" on my Facebook page.



We're still in Florida! I feel very blessed to be able to enjoy a jump start on Spring by our stay in Florida. While I can sympathize with my family and friends that endured the long winter in the Northeast, just know that I thought of you often. And I mean it, too. I would wonder if the snow was melting, how cold was it, did any of my friends have extensive damage from the snow,  how much snow is left in our yard in Mexico, NY, how windy was it, and did anyone have any damage from the harsh winter?

White Ibis


Most of the "snowbirds" (people who spend their winter in Florida to get away from the cold and snow) have headed back home by now. It's starting to get hot in Florida. At 10 a.m. in the morning it's 80 degrees Fahrenheit.  We were in the 90's yesterday and that's expected today, too. We're not really snowbirds. We stay home for most of the winter. My husband really enjoys the cold weather and he is avid downhill skier. He has enjoyed his time the last few years skiing a few times each week with our son and two oldest grandchildren. I'm glad they have this special time together enjoying this outdoor activity.

Green Heron


So the end of February (I have to tear my husband away from skiing), we head south to enjoy some warm weather. And usually March isn't that great for skiing because the snow is starting to melt and you get the spring rains. However this year was an exception. I can't believe that March was as cold as it was in the Northeast. I almost feel 'guilty' for enjoying all this heat and sunshine in Florida.

Osprey with his catch of fresh fish

Osprey on recycled satellite dish for nesting purposes



But soon we will be leaving here and heading home. I always enjoy the songs of the birds and the green growth of spring when we arrive here. One of the first sounds that you hear when you head south is the song of the Mocking Bird. This bird has so many varieties of songs that unless you see him while he's singing you never know if you are hearing the actual species he's imitating or the Mocking Bird itself.

Sandhill Crane sitting on nest with two recent hatchlings


We also look forward to seeing tropical bird species that live in the areas surrounding the marshes, swamps, shorelines and lakes of the south. Some of those birds include the Ibis, Sandhill Cranes, Anhinga, Great Egrets, and Herons. When we arrive in early March, several bird species have built their nests and laid their eggs.

Sandhill Crane with chicks that are 24 hours old
It seems so odd to me to be down here this time of year and everything is green, the wildlife are raising their babies, and the bugs are out. It's really strange to see the fireflies in April. There are some pesty bugs around here though. Like the mosquitoes and the "no see-um's". They are bad. And of course there are the alligators, and snakes. Lots of snakes (poisonous ones, too).

Baby Great-horned Owl








Great Egret


Bougainvillea
Also, because everything so so green and flowering in Florida in the spring there is a lot of pollen that can cause several problems for those with allergies.







Florida = exquisite flora, fauna, beautiful sunrises and sunsets, and beaches!




Note: some of the wildlife featured on this page are also found in several other States including Central and Northern New York. The wildlife was not baited or called in for these pictures. 

Hope you enjoyed some of 
our photos from Florida. 
Feel free to leave a comment.

16 comments:

  1. I lived in New England for years, but am now a full time Florida resident. You captured so beautifully the essence of my adopted state. Love your blogs.

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind comments. I really appreciate it. And we so much enjoy our time spent in this beautiful, tropical state.

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  2. Very nice Sue! We got back to Mexico from Florida on April 1st, after being there since December. Love hearing the birds sing! Keep your blogs coming, I enjoy them so much.

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    1. Thank you, Georgia. Yes, I love hearing the birds sing when we first arrive here in early March. Especially after most of the winter is spent in the Northeast and the birds have not started their spring songs up there yet. It always amazes me how tropical it is here with all the lush foliage and birds. Thanks for commenting.

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  3. You really saw a lot of birds. The Sandhill Crane is one I have been wanting to see. I checked your blog a few times because I thought it long you were not posting. Glad you are enjoying the FL sunshine. Today we had 75° weather, so things are looking up.

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    1. Thanks, Donna. So many birds winter in Florida or migrate through the State so there is an abundance of birds throughout the State. Some of my friends reported seeing the Sandhill Cranes in the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge last year (in NY State), but I never made it over there. Maybe this year we'll make a day trip over there. Not too far from where you are either - right off the Thruway.
      So glad it's finally warming up there. I haven't been in too much of a hurry to get back up north with the cold and snow, but now I'm ready to head back and enjoy our Spring in the north country.

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  4. Hey Sue What beautiful pictures. Makes me wish we were heading back to Florida to see all those lovely birds again, especially the baby Sandhill Cranes. The osprey arrived on Saturday in our area, a good sign of spring, sure hope it stays after our very cold winter.

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    1. Thank you, Elizabeth. Most of the pictures were taken in Clerbrook. The Sandhill Cranes nested behind us and were sitting on the eggs when we arrived the beginning of March.
      That's great that you have ospreys in your area. I love their calls. It certainly has been a long, cold winter. It was even cold at night here when we arrived. Hopefully spring has arrived in the north and will decide to stay. Thanks for commenting.

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  5. Loved the photos especially the birds, green heron and sandhill crane with chicks!!
    There is beauty everywhere in nature! Thanks for sharing. Bobbie Hayek

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    1. Thank you, Bobbie. There are so many birds here that I wish I had more time to go exploring for catching photos of the wildlife around here. It's nice, too, because there are so many birds that migrate through this area on their way north and I'm seeing birds that I've never seen before. It truly is a paradise down here. Thanks for commenting.

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  6. It was nice to receive your last blog from Florida for this spring. I enjoyed seeing all the species and pics Ted has taken. Glad you had some time to relax in the sun and warmth Florida provides. Have a safe trip back home and we will catch up in the garden soon.

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    1. Thank you, LuLu. We really enjoyed our time spent here this spring. It was good to enjoy the sun and warmth in the south. I love all the different wildlife and flowers that are local to Florida. Now it's time to head home and get busy in our gardens. And it's getting too hot in Florida. Thanks for your comments.

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  7. Replies
    1. Thank you, Ann. I'm glad you liked them.

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  8. Sue, lucky you still in FL....love all the wildlife you are sharing...so many we never see here. Have a safe trip back!

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    1. Thank you, Donna. It was a wonderful time away enjoying the spring sunshine and warmth, and fresh fruits and vegetables, flowers and wildlife. Now I guess I need to go home and get busy in my gardens.

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