Monday, February 8, 2010

Purple Martin

Harns Marsh
Spent about two hours this morning birding Harns Marsh in Lehigh Acres. Harns Marsh is usually a dependable location for two of Florida's specialities, that being Snail Kites and Limpkins. Both feed on the apple snails found here. However, the unusual rains we have been experiencing lately have kept the water levels higher than normal at the marsh, which effects the numbers of snails available for the kites and limpkins.
On past visits I had been able to count as many as ten kites working the marsh. Today I could only locate a lone female. Limpkins continued to be readily available though. The most prevalent species today were hundreds of Tree Swallows and American Coots. Tryed to see if any rough-wing swallows were mixed in with the tree swallows, but I could not managed that. But I did have my FOS Purple Martin. It won't be long till the swallow-tailed kites return as well. As for the waterfowl, we had hundreds of coots, a hand-full of Mottled Ducks, about six Lesser Scaups, about 5 Blue-winged Teal and a sole Hooded Merganser. Also found a mixed flock of warblers including Palm, Yellow-Rumped and Yellow-Throated Warblers, plus a Ruby Crowned Kinglet and several Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers.
From here drove over to Alva to locate Red-headed Woodpeckers.
The days list - Mottled Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Lesser Scaup, Hooded Merganser, Pied-billed Grebe, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, Cattle Egret, White Ibis, Glossy Ibis, Wood Stork, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Snail Kite, Red-shouldered Hawk, Common Moorhen, American Coot, Limpkin, Rock Pigeon, Belted Kingfisher, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Purple Martin, Tree Swallow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler, Palm Warbler, Red-winged Blackbird, Boat-tailed Grackle, Mourning Dove, Red-headed Woodpecker, Loggerhead Shrike, European Starling, American Goldfinch


  1. Great blog. Where in Alva are the redheaded woodpeckers? B&N

  2. Thank you very much. There is a colony centered around a pasture on the NW corner of North River Rd and Parkinson Road. All private property so you must bird from the road.


  3. It's good to see the update on Harnes Marsh, Tom.