|Large Flock of Sandhill Cranes near Dade City|
One location I searched was Autin Road near Dade City. A rural area with pastures, farms and parks. Observed a large flock of Sandhill Cranes that had to contain at least seventy individuals. Other interesting sitings included several Wilson's Snipes, a pair of beautiful Red-Tailed Hawks and Eastern Bluebirds. At the wooded intersection of River Road and Autin Road I was lucky to find a mixed flock of Carolina Chickadees, White-eyed Vireos, Red-belled Woodpeckers, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Black-and-White Warblers, Tufted Titmouse and Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.
|Horned Grebe at Anclote Gulf Park in Tarpon Springs|
Next headed over to Mitchell Blvd in New Port Richey were a white-faced ibis had been sited for a few weeks. I checked the location twice, but no white-faced ibis. In fact I did not see any glossy ibis in the whole county. The ponds had cooperative Mottled Ducks, Pied-billed Grebes, a Sandhill Crane, Palm Warblers and a Savannah Sparrow. At nearby Trinity Blvd. I did locate a trio of Nanday Parakeets.
Next was Anclote Gulf Park in Tarpon Springs. Last month the place was all a buzz by the presence of a suspected kelp gull. This gull is native to the southern hemisphere. So out of curiosity I made my way here. Sited along the road prior to arriving here I spotted two Bald Eagles, a couple of Ospreys and a Cooper's Hawk. The tide was high on my arrival so no gulls or terns resting on the flats, but several Common Loons were fishing on the north side of the fishing pier. From the river side of the pier were an Anhinga, several Double-crested Cormorants and at least twenty four Horned Grebes. The best looks at these I grebes I have had so far.
On the way home I made a stop at the Terra Verde ponds north of Ft DeSota park in Pinellis County. Found an American Wigeon, a few Northern Shoveler, hundreds of Redhead, plus Ring-necked Duck, Lesser Scaup, Pied-billed Grebe, Brown Pelican, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Egret, Laughing Gull, and few more Monk Parakeets. Next made a quick stop at East Beach in Ft DeSota Park were I added Red-breasted Merganser, more Common Loons and Anhingas.