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  1. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    Huh? What! Can’t be!! Maybe the white balance in the camera was way off! That black head sure looks washed out 🤪. (EBirded correctly as Yellow-crowned.) Nice to know someone is not only reading these reports but not falling asleep in doing so. Thanks, Mike, for all your comments! 👍
  2. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    Sorry, everyone. I’ll fire the editor for that mistake. It is a Great White Heron. There is nothing to compare size in the posted shot but the bird was the size of a Great Blue, not the much smaller Great Egret. We were on the lookout for both the Great White and Wurdemann’s. Looking at my...
  3. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    Thanks for the comments! Too bad we planned that trip without getting in touch with local birders. This was a trip to cover a lot of loose ends, bird-wise. We feel like we did that (mostly) and don’t know when we might be back. The tropical nature of south Florida is a magnet for our tastes...
  4. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-16-21 Up and out early for bagels from Aloha bagels and Deli. This time we took advantage of outdoor seating and pleasant temps to enjoy our last breakfast in Florida. This deli has a century old Live Oak in front of it, so it’s a known landmark. Our original plan for today was to paddle...
  5. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-15-21 We secured our gear and boats in the car and hit the road before breakfast, planning on a stop at Harriets Restaurant in Key Largo. On our last trip here we opted for sit down, but not today. Muffins and a mango smoothie would fuel us for now. Along the way multiple runners and other...
  6. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-14-21 We awoke at dawn, ready to organize yet again for the big return trip. Our neighbor moved to our site but we left some of our gear and still needed items on the picnic table. One last tour of the fort to locate a Mangrove Cuckoo, but never found one. We met and spoke with “Chip”...
  7. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-13-21 We awakened earlier than usual, due to an early bedtime and the background noise of snoring coming from another tent. A quick check at the fort for early morning nighthawks provided no target bird. Fueled by tea steeped last night and rice cakes with peanut butter we prepped for our...
  8. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-12-21 As usual we were up early, still waffling on what day to paddle to Loggerhead Key. We opted to move camp sites when available and paddle on the 13th, due to a marginally better weather report for the 13th. We casually birded the fort courtyard and periphery. Today’s find included a...
  9. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-11-21 We both were up by 5 A.M., having enjoyed a quiet night with a very quiet AC unit. We were waved off by the office employee inside the locked lobby, so left our keys in the room. Unfortunately the parking “tag” one of us had clipped on the rearview was missed and that would be found...
  10. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-10-21 Our first priority the next morning was breakfast, so we motored out for a short drive to the Dolphin Deli. After securing coffee, tea and bagels we went back for our picnic breakfast. Fortified for the morning we broke camp along with several fellow tent campers. We were ready to move...
  11. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-09-21 We were up early and drove away from Florida City a little after 7 A.M. The remaining “Aloe King” made up part of the morning fuel. First stop: Key Largo Hammock Botanical site. Having visited this site 2 years ago and remembering the biting bugs, we again donned the netting and...
  12. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-08-21 One stop I did not mention for yesterday’s activity included a stop at the ENP visitor center. The outside tent set up for information provided some vague and confusing info about potential paddling in Florida Bay. Undeterred by both of our interpretations of her directions, we...
  13. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-07-21 We awoke early for a shorter commute to Mahogany Hammock in Everglades National Park (ENP) for a chance to find an uncommon sub-species of Seaside Sparrow. This is a short, boardwalk trail. Some expected Egrets and common birds were seen, along with a a few Great Crested Flycatchers...
  14. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-06-21 Shark Valley in Everglades National Park (ENP) lists opening hours as 8:30 A.M. Most likely one can park and walk around the gate if arrival is earlier , but the official entrance booth is not staffed until then. We arrived with a few minutes to spare; this was almost an hour’s drive...
  15. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    More photos from 5-5:
  16. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-05-21 We were up early to move on and out of the Miami area and bird along the way. Our first stop was Brewer Park, located in a neighborhood and known for some good birding. While we did find the Red-masked Parakeet and a Chestnut-fronted Macaw, we were unable to locate the reported...
  17. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-04-21 Up early but took time for breakfast, before heading to the Loxahatchee NWR. This was a second visit for us, remembering the great views of Snail Kites we had. Sadly, a volunteer informed us that this species is no longer common in the refuge. He suspected herbicidal spraying...
  18. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    05-03-21 Up early to drive south to the town of Loxahatchee, Fla. A cool morning with some dew on the car. Along the way, we stopped at Publix market to pickup a Florida Sun Pass and submarine sandwiches for lunch. The Florida Sun Pass allows you to pass through toll gates via car transponder...
  19. Hamhed

    East Florida, Dry Tortugas and a bit of Georgia

    The chill of winter in the North Carolina mountains finally forced us into reporting our trip from early May. A twist in this report is that it was 98% written by my wife, Liz, her first. I filled roles of chief editor, eBird and photo organizer. Hamhed 05-01-21 After days of preparation...
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