Thursday, March 26, 2009

Luckiest Ducks In Alachua

There were birds at the Alachua Sink last weekend too.
It might seem like all I saw were gators, but it was pretty birdy for mid-day.
It was a windy day so even though the swaying reeds were full of smaller birds like red-wing blackbirds and the air was accented with soaring marshhawks, I didn't get any decent photos of these.

The water birds were more cooperative.

There were lots of galinules among the dollarweed.

Little blue herons are big on risk taking.

They're quick too ... but not too quick.

An old favorite, the tricolor heron. I just don't see many of these, so watching this one hunt the dollarweeds was a pleasure.

Why didn't they name this bird "White Britches"?

The ducks above reminded me of a video that was shown during the first Gulf War. Remember the "Luckiest Guy In Iraq" video of the truck crossing a bridge moments before a guided munition blasted the bridge to pieces?
Watching these ducks waddle towards and then away from some huge gators just tickled me and that video popped into my head.


CHEF TROLL said...

Always amazes me to see birds ignoring the gators. Maybe they don't after dusk? Way cool to see a multi-colored Heron.

New enviromentalistish Troll Poll up!

threecollie said...

I love Pure Florida videos. What a wealth of birds. I wonder if they even notice the gators.

Sharon said...

"White-britches"...I like it, has a nice ring :) Man, it is definitely Croc-Week at PF. Only not. It's Gator-week :) Crazy how the armadillos are more aggressive and scary than the gators. Must be global warming ;)

nfmgirl said...

I LOVE gators, when I am in a secure location. I am TERRIFIED of them if I am in a kayak or canoe. Is there any real risk to kayakers? Any reports of kayakers getting attacked by gators? I see you kayak quite a bit.

I watched a mother and her babies (a galinule, I think you called them above?) narrowly escape a large gator at Lakes Park. I'm a huge animal lover, I do catch and release of bugs in my house (even spiders, and I have arachnaphobia), but even I was telling my friend not to throw rocks to distract the gator or interfere in any way. I told him if Momma was too dumb to teach her babies how to evade gators, then she probably shouldn't be breeding. Let nature take its course.

Momma smartly and successfully directed the babies to safety. All is well with the world.

Sandcastle Momma said...

Like Chef Troll I'm always amazed at how close the birds get to the gators. Don't gators eat herons (which must taste like chicken LOL)?

Susan Rose said...

I'm sure the gators are getting fat from these birds.

That's wonderful about Frank... I TOLD YOU HE'D BE BACK !!! I guarantee that he thought of your care and guidance while sitting behind bars. That's powerful stuff to meditate on.

I've posted a Great Horned Owl if you're interested.

Deb said...

Wow, is there a safe place for shorebirds anywhere in Florida?!

Word verification- gratuami (I think it means "thanks friend" in Italian or something)

Dr. Know said...

There is an old bromide, "Gators eat the weak, the injured, and the stupid." I would endeavour to include tourists - but I would be repeating the latter.

robin andrea said...

I love this set of photos, fc. It really surprises me to see how close the birds get to the gators. Are they risk-takers or just oblivious?

Floridacracker said...

Chef Troll,
Been there done that poll! I think at dusk it's a diff story.

Maybe we never see the ones who didn't notice ...

If the aggresive dillos breed with the lazy gators we are doomed.

Good for you for not interfering. Tough sometimes to not,but you were right.
Spiders weird me out too.

Herons taste like fishy chicken.

Love horned owls, but I never see them here ... just Barreds.

The dock. Yes, I think the dock is a good safe place. I had one alight on the barstool next to me down in Daytona once. That was a pretty safe place.

Too bad more cats don't swim.

My theory is that they are oblivious risk takers.

Dr. Know said...

Sorry, FC,
I'm not gonna strike at that troll. Just remember, however, dogs do swim - and make a tasty snack.

Bj said...

The video is awesome! I have seen gators smack their mouths round many birds. The worst part are the long legged birds that take a while to drag under. YUCK ... Goose bumps.