CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: White Ibis (Eudocimus albus)
Hanging out in Florida native Baldcypress tree at my neighbors place, overlooking their pond.
Diet: mostly insects but also aquatic fauna.
From June 2010, a juvenile in my pond.
My take: Treetops to Marsh: The White Ibis
September 2013 Across the street in a marshy lot a mix of adults and juveniles.
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus varius)
EUREKA!!!! After discovering sapsucker wells on a live oak back in 2014, I finally got to see our winter visitors in action. Another tick on my Florida birdy life list!
Shown on Florida Native Plant: LAUREL OAK; DIAMOND OAK (Quercus laurifolia)
My take: Solving Garden Mysteries
From May 2014, a tell tale sign of a Sapsucker visit:
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker wells in a Live Oak tree.
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)
There were several titmice flitting from Wax Myrtle to Magnolia to Saltbush ultimately landing in the laurel oak where they snagged some acorns.
“Tufted Titmice eat mainly insects in the summer, including caterpillars, beetles, ants and wasps, stink bugs, and treehoppers, as well as spiders and snails. Tufted Titmice also eat seeds, nuts, and berries, including acorns and beech nuts. Experiments with Tufted Titmice indicate they always choose the largest seeds they can when foraging.”
Acorn is from a Florida Native Plant: LAUREL OAK; DIAMOND OAK (Quercus laurifolia)
Sitting in the oak.
From February 2015:
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea) Juvenile
Despite the name, these birds are white during their first year.
Hanging out in Florida native long leaf pine tree (Pinus palustris) at my neighbors place, overlooking their pond.
Diet: “Little Blue Herons eat mostly small fish, supplemented by a variety of small amphibians as well as crustaceans, grasshoppers, dragonflies and other invertebrates. Types of fish prey vary by region, and may include anchovies, killifish, gobies, perch, darters, bass, minnows, carp, and others. Invertebrate prey may include crayfish, prawns, isopods, crabs, and a wide variety of insects.”
My take: A Heron By Any Other Name Would Be Easier To Identify
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)
Scavenger. Smaller size, pale head, white legs and wings with only the underside tips showing white distinguish this one from its Turkey Vulture cousin. This guy and a few cohorts were here to clean up a deceased marsh rabbit that one of the setters got hold of. Sad day for me, but as a part of the circle of life I left it in the non-dog area so the vultures get to feed. If only bunny had stuck to that area to begin with 😦
Diet: mainly carrion
Shown in Florida native plant: LONGLEAF PINE TREE (Pinus palustris)
My take: Nature’s Cleanup Crew
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)
Large scavenger. This guy is here to clean up a deceased marsh rabbit that one of the setters got hold of this morning. Sad day for me, but as a part of the circle of life I left it in the non-dog area so the vultures get to feed. If only bunny had stuck to that area to begin with 😦
Diet: mainly carrion
Shown in Florida native plant: LONGLEAF PINE TREE (Pinus palustris) SNAG
Learn to avoid conflict with vultures: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/publications/wildlife_damage/content/printable_version/fs_vulture_damage_man.pdf