Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Florida - Fort-de-Soto

Another day on the beach was decided upon for today with a drive to the Gulf Coast where we would visit Fort-de-Soto, an island south of St Petersberg.

The island is a lovely spot and was very quiet today. The girls collected shells from the beach and I scanned the sandbanks for birds, soon finding a sizable flock of around 300 Black Skimmers which I had missed over at Merritt Island on previous visits.

Distant views required a concerted effort to separate out the small plovers and after a fashion I was able to pick out the Wilson’s Plovers and Piping Plovers from the more commoner Semipalmated Plovers on the sands. Scanning the edges of the mangroves from North Beach I counted seven Yellow-crowned Night Herons, a single Reddish Egret, American Oystercatcher and Roseate Spoonbill. Another Northern Harrier and Cooper’s Hawk were picked out on leaving the island later in the afternoon but the Dowitchers that apparently been near the causeway road earlier in the day had departed.

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