Saturday, January 24, 2009

Winter Sun Day 2 - Shark Valley

Having showered up and checked out we headed to the other main entrance to the park, on its North side, level with Miami at the Shark Valley visitor centre. It was heaving, either as a consequence of the time of day or the boardwalk and ‘tram rides’ (e.g. open sided bus rides). The nature almost feels canned as there are Alligators dotted along the side of the canal and boardwalk and there are loads of Herons of different varieties there.

At one point the light was perfect and I took a couple of pictures with which I am very pleased, including these, of a Snowy Egret:




























Here a Tri-coloured Heron in full breeding plumage, stands on what appears to be a nest:


















One Alligator had clearly recently bred, their offspring look very vulnerable:














This Great White Egret showing very clearly the strong green breeding plumage colouration around the bill:














My favourite bird of the holiday was the Little Blue Heron, another adult shown here:
















and juvenile:














As the sun started to set and the when we had to head off to our respective airports loomed, Black-crowned Night Herons started to appear:

















And the last bird of the holiday, this Northern Mockingbird, the best view we had of one across the weekend:
















You can get a very good sense of the Everglades in two days, at least we feel we did though clearly you could spend weeks here exploring too, especially as most of the land is accessible only by canoe and then only really during winter and spring.

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