Jul 30, 2008 by Janine |
There were at least 20 of these Pig Frogs congregating atop some floating algae. They are named for their loud, snorting/grunting call.

They attracted some unwanted attention, in the form of a Banded Watersnake.

A quick flyover Snail Kite as the thunderstorm closes in.

Planning a trip to the Glades this Saturday. Still trying for a panther shot ;)

Name the Beardie

Jul 27, 2008 by Janine |
I have adopted one of Tadpole's babies. We think its a female because she has always been 'petite.' And, unfortunately, one of her siblings bit off her tail tip when they were hatchlings so her tail is short- another reason why she seems small.

She needs a name! Any suggestions? We have been calling her "The Little One." Don't let that title fool you though, she is growing fast and eats like a monster.

Silkworm Tug o' War

I was sick this past week with some head congestion and stomach upset, but doing better now.
Here are some photos taken on a rainy afternoon.

Marsh Rabbit

Whistling Duck

Wood Stork

Moorhen and Baby

Swallowtail Kites

Jul 18, 2008 by Janine |
Flying over the Loxahatchee NWR.

Wetlands Boardwalk at Green Cay:

Mourning Dove

Red-wing Blackbird

Fish Crow

Silkworm Moths

Jul 12, 2008 by Janine |
Some of the silkworms had spun cocoons before they could be consumed by Tadpole, so I set them up in a box in hope of breeding them. Unfortunately, they lack mouthparts and do not eat or drink so they do not live very long.

The first one emerged last week and I subjected it to a photo shoot.

Here is the moth posed with Encyclia radiata, one of my fragrant orchids.

I discovered this moth dead today. On the bright side, five more have hatched throughout the week, and one is laying eggs! Life goes on.

Coyote Ugly, Everglades Style

Jul 08, 2008 by Janine |
We continued along the main park road to Flamingo. It took some courage to brave the saltmarsh mosquitoes at dusk! We arrived at the marina to see three crocodiles swimming languidly below the boat lift.

The crocodiles dispersed, the ospreys settled in on their nighttime perches, and there was a distinct lack of human noise. It was a peaceful evening, punctuated by the occasional whining buzzzzzzzzzz as a mosquito approached your face. The rain started as we left.

We drove on through the drizzle as it got darker. There were plenty of frogs and toads on the road, which resulted in some creative swerving. Surprisingly there were no snakes.

This Barn Owl was cooperative, perched just off the main road. It was fully dark by this time and still raining.

It was getting late, and we had seen no snakes, so we decided to forego our usual stops and head home. Little did we know what was ahead of us. Just a few hundred feet away from the pay station and the main entrance to the park, a large feline shape sauntered out and along the edge of the sawgrass, just off the road. A FLORIDA PANTHER! I quickly turned the truck around to get another look, and managed a half second glimpse before it disappeared into the sawgrass. I did hear a "bark" coming from the distance ahead of us, which I thought was odd.

Just before the pay station, I saw another large animal moving along the road, but this was distinctly dog-like. Coyote? It was not as secretive or graceful as the panther, and trotted along the road cheerfully. We were amazed to see two large carnivores within such a small distance. We passed the main visitor's center and saw another coyote in the sawgrass, this time a smaller one. Again, it did not appear fearful, and kept walking parallel to the road and my truck. The darkness, drizzle, mosquitoes, and excitement were not the best recipe for quality photography. Here are some shots of the coyote that came out better than I expected.

Distant fireworks heralded our return to "civilization". An awesome Independence day in the Glades!

Independence Day Everglades Trip

Jul 05, 2008 by Janine |
We celebrated the 4th of July with a long overdue trip to Everglades National Park. The mosquito level was at HIGH and there were ominous thunderstorms closing in as we arrived.

ST commented that I always get good light here in Florida- well not on this trip! But, even with the stormy weather and the skeeters, we had a fantastic time.

Along the Research Road, we saw a single bluebird. Other memorable sightings on the way include Northern Bobwhite quail and Ground Dove, two species I rarely see.

The storm approaching. First in color.

Then in sepia.

Common nighthawk resting in the road.

Demonic looking coreid bug along the Anhinga trail.

Lubber Grasshopper

During our evening Glades visits, we are always hopeful that we will see a panther. We saw one last year, and thought that it was a once-in-a-lifetime sighting...

To be continued!