Birdwatching Adventure – May 2013

Sunrise at Patrick AFB by Lee

Sunrise at Patrick AFB by Lee

And they rose up early in the morning, and the sun shone upon the water, … (2 Kings 3:22a KJV)

We just got back from a spontaneous three day trip down to the Palm Beach Zoo, (Palm Beach, FL) and up to the Viera Wetlands (Viera, FL) and then back home yesterday. As we rode along and since I haven’t been driving because of my eye situation, I kept a list of the birds along the way. The list below was the ones I reported to e-Bird. This includes the birds that were at the Zoo, but not captives. Our loop took us down US 27 and then back up I-95, through Orlando and back across I-4 to Winter Haven. Not a bad list. The ones in bold were special finds. In fact, the Northern Rough-winged Swallow and Bank Swallow were added to my life list. I am now at 245 on their list. The list was kept for each county we went through. (It gave me something to do while riding.)

Black-bellied Whistling-Duck
Muscovy Duck (Domestic type)
Indian Peafowl (Domestic type)
Wood Stork
Magnificent Frigatebird
Double-crested Cormorant
Brown Pelican
Least Bittern
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Little Blue Heron
Tricolored Heron
Cattle Egret
Black-crowned Night-Heron
White Ibis
Glossy Ibis
White-faced Ibis
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Swallow-tailed Kite
Bald Eagle
Red-shouldered Hawk
Common Gallinule
American Coot
Sandhill Crane
Ruddy Turnstone
Rock Pigeon
Eurasian Collared-Dove
Mourning Dove
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Crested Caracara
American Crow
Fish Crow
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Bank Swallow
Northern Mockingbird
European Starling
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Boat-tailed Grackle
House Sparrow

Anhinga (Anhinga anhinga) Immatures at Viera Wetland by Lee

Anhinga (Anhinga anhinga) Immatures at Viera Wetland by Lee

The Viera Wetlands count is included with those above, but is the individual count just for Viera. That actually was a birdwatching destination and e-Bird likes it counted separately. It is one of our favorites over on the east side of Florida. Unfortunately, it has apparently been dry over there, plus most of the Winter Birds have gone back north. So, the birding wasn’t as plentiful as normal. Here is the list of the birds we saw.  We stopped there in the afternoon on Wednesday and then visited it again Thursday before heading home. We saw 23 species altogether .

Species Name 15-May 16-May
Black-bellied Whistling-Duck 2
Anhinga 9 6
Brown Pelican 2
Least Bittern 1
Great Blue Heron 8 6
Great Egret 10 14
Little Blue Heron 1 1
Tricolored Heron 1 1
Cattle Egret 11 15
White Ibis 7 7
Glossy Ibis 2 7
White-faced Ibis 1
Turkey Vulture 1 15
Osprey 2
Common Gallinule 5 13
American Coot 8 4
Belted Kingfisher 1
Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
Crested Caracara 1
Fish Crow 1 2
Red-winged Blackbird 10 12
Common Grackle 3
Boat-tailed Grackle 18 22


Northern Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway) at Viera Wetlands by Lee

Northern Crested Caracara (Caracara cheriway) at Viera Wetlands by Lee

The Crested Caracara was the best find. We had taken our photos and had stopped at the exit to put our cameras away. Dan had his in the trunk and mine was bagged when I look up and there he was right by us on the ground. Needless to say, we scrambled to get the camera back out, hoping we wouldn’t scare it off. As you can see, we got the photos of him.

I will save the Palm Beach Zoo birds and photos until another post. I took over 700, so it might take a day or two.

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Watching young nearby by Lee at Viera Wetlands

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Watching young nearby at Viera Wetlands

Here is what is being watched so closely:

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Young by Lee at Viera Wetlands

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) Young at Viera Wetlands


Viera Wetlands

e-Bird Home Page

Wordless Birds


5 thoughts on “Birdwatching Adventure – May 2013

  1. Wow, sounds like a happy trip for Bird-People. I think I just created a new species, and you and your hubby are the first specimens of it.

    My step-sister and her family used to live in Viera, but I never had a chance to get down there while they were there. It sounds like a major haven for birds.

    I’ll keep praying for your eye situation so you can get back to driving too.


    • I doubt we are the first Bird-People. There are quite a few of us out and about.
      You missed a great birding place at Viera. It is better in the winter, but always enjoyable.
      Not driving isn’t so bad, this way I get a chauffeur. :)
      Thanks for the prayers, they are appreciated.
      Lord bless,


  2. Dear Lee,
    Hope your eye surgery went on well.Good to see your trip snaps. My best wishes to you.


    • Thank you, Sarah,
      I had the retina surgery 5 months ago and waiting on the 6 month checkup. If all is well, then will have the cataract surgery sometime in June. I am trying to make the best of blurred vision.
      Lord bless you also,


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