First Bird and Birding Trip of 2009

Here we are in 2009 and it’s time to start listing the birds we see this year. I hope last year was very

1st photo of 2009 - Female Ring-necked Duck 1st photo of 2009

1st photo of 2009 - Female Ring-necked Duck

productive in the bird listing area. I am still checking my counts, due to a software glitch that knocked some of the lists out. With the year only three days old, I trust you have been spotting birds already. On “BRDBRAIN”, a listing service here in Florida, they have all been listing the first bird they saw this year.

The first birds all saw when I looked out at my feeders on New Year’s Day were two Mourning Doves. What was the first bird you saw? Post a comment to this blog and let’s find out what everyone saw.

Today, we took our first Birding Trip for the year and went to Lakes Morton and Hollingsworth in Lakeland, FL. That is about a 20 minute ride from our home. We were not disappointed. On the way we counted a Blue Jay, Boat-tailed Grackles, a Wood Stork flying by, 11 Cattle Egrets, Great Egret, 15 Fish Crows, Mourning Doves and Eurasian-collared Dove, Mallards and a Great Blue Heron.

When we got to Lake Morton we were overwhelmed by the number of Ring-necked Ducks (150+) that are down for their winter vacation. There was also 27 Ruddy Ducks, Ring-billed Gulls (lots), 15 White Pelicans with Double-crested Cormorants swimming right along with them, Mallards, 2 Great Blue Herons, Great Egret, White Swans and Black Swans, Geese, Pied-bill Grebe, Muscovy Ducks, Coots (lots), and 2 Rock Doves, and an Anhinga or two.

Then off to Lake Hollingsworth, but this time we were on the north side of the lake at a walkway they have at a small wetlands. Here is what we saw there: 50+ Fish Crows, 7 Double-crested Cormorants, Mallards, White Ibises, Anhinga, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Palm Warbler, 2 Limpkins, Great Blue Heron, 2 Coots, Boat-tailed Grackles, Common Grackles, 2 Common Moorhens, White Pelican, Ospreys, 2 Red-bellied Woodpecker, Eastern Phoebe and some unknowns that we are trying to ID from photos.

All in all, it was a gorgeous day and the Lord provided lots to look at and enjoy. I trust your year will be loaded with much viewing of the beautiful birds and critters that have been created for ours and the Lords pleasure. Don’t forget to leave a comment as to what was the first bird you saw this year and where.

The photos have not really been touch up yet. Just wanted to get some posted to show what we saw today.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.


8 thoughts on “First Bird and Birding Trip of 2009

  1. Thanks Mike for the kind words. Just checked out your photos and you have some amazing shots. Maybe you would let some of them be use here occasionally. Love the shot where the duck dived.


  2. I am encouraged by your faith and your photography. My son is a senior at Southeastern and lives on Lake Morton. I am a photographer from Ohio and enjoy wildlife photography in Florida. From your website I discovered Circle B Bar Reserve and spent two days shooting there in the second week of January. What a wonderful place, especially for this Ohio boy. Thanks so much for the info that your site provides. You can see my photography from my last Florida trip at
    You can visit my wedding website at
    Thanks again for all your stories and info on birding in the Polk County area.
    Mike Bader


  3. Living in an Apt. complex about all I get to see is the mallards and Cananian Geese. They are not as many as there are in the summer. Still It is amazing how God has created them to survive in the extreme cold that we have here in Indy. Keep up the good work!!!
    Love Anna


  4. Hi Lee,

    That is a good question!

    I had to think. I believe the first bird I noticed in 2009 was the English Sparrow. The second most likely would have been the Mallard—actually many Mallards.

    Thanks for your excellent articles, Lee.


  5. My first birds of 2009 were a Muscovy duck and also an “Aflac” duck. I fed them with my family. There were roughly 15 ducks at the small pond in our neighborhood. They swarmed us once we showed up with bread. Abi got so excited!!! Esi slept through it all.


  6. Hi, Dawn, and welcome to Florida. Hope your binos and scope get a great workout. What was the first bird you saw this year? Mine were the two Mourning Doves here in Winter Haven. Lee


  7. What a great birdie day you had!
    I am so excited ..we just arrived in Florida today….
    I love birding my binos and scope are getting itchy to go out and see them all!
    A Wonderful, Happy, Healthy and Joyous new years to you and yours!


Please leave a Comment. They are encouraging.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s