Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Little Estero Lagoon

Wednesday June 19th

Common Buckeye Butterflies are common
among the mangroves

June is the time of year that birders may want to vacation up North, because this is our birding doldrums. Spring migration is over and the start of the Fall migration is weeks away. But we still can find some interesting birds.

This young Herring Gull does seem to realize
that it should have migrated north by now

Gray Kingbirds arrive in the area in the spring to nest
and will return to the Central America coast line by the end of summer
Little Estero Lagoon, Bowditch Point Park and  Carlos Point on Fort Myers Beach all offer opportunities for some good birding.  Currently Black Skimmers, Least Terns, Wilson's Plover, Snowy Plovers and Sea Turtles are all nesting on Fort Myers Beach. Add to this are the Gray Kingbirds sitting on the wires along Estero Boulevard and Magnificent Frigatebirds are floating on the breeze watching for a free meal.

Probably true Mottled Ducks, but many in the area are crossed with Mallards

The other day I spent about two hours walking the beach along the Little Estero Lagoon Preserve. It was hot, but the cloud cover provided some much needed shading.

Suspect we have a concealed camera pointed at a nesting plover family 

Wilson's Plover.

Nesting Least Terns were very evident and fledglings were also active in testing the powers of flight, Lots of Wilson's Plover were seen including some mall hatchlings.  A patrolling Great Blue Heron was concerning as baby birds are diffidently on their menu. I wouldn't have noticed one particular nesting Wilson's Plover, but she nest area has been cordoned off and a strange wood box  has been positioned so that a concealed camera can keep tabs on the nesting activity.
This Great Blue Heron appeared to be patrolling the bird nurseries looking for a meal
This Least Tern was watching over is young offspring

Fledgling Least Tern taking in the view on the beach

One of several Sea Turtle nest cordoned off along the beach

Many Sea Turtle nests are also cordoned off to try and protect them.  Members of Turtle Time patrol the beaches daily looking for new nests and to check on the status of the known sites.

My ebird List

Brown Pelican

Tricolored Heron

This maybe a  Needham's Skimmer ??