Today I went birding with Carlos Ross, and excellent birder and a recent transplant to Orlando from Phoenix. He needed a few Florida specialties for lifers, so we headed south. We began the day at Three Lakes Wildlife Management Area, where we hiked along the Florida Trail near the parking area off Canoe Creek Road (south of St. Cloud) and we went to the observation tower at Lake Jackson. Next, we headed down Joe Overstreet Road (also off Canoe Creek Road, just north of Three Lakes) to Lake Kissimmee. After lunch, we went to Brinson Park on the NW tip of Lake Tohopekaliga (Toho) in downtown Kissimmee. We didn't see anything super rare or unexpected, but we had a fun day, and Carlos got some lifers, indeed!
Black-Bellied Whistling-Duck (about 20 adults and juvies in the wetland mitigation along Oak St. east of 17/92)
American White Pelican (Lake Toho)
Great Blue Heron
Little Blue Heron
Snail Kite (5 at Lake Toho, 1 at the BBWD spot)
Limpkin (3-4 at Lake Jackson in Three Lakes WMA; 3 at Lake Toho)
Whooping Crane (2 at the end of Joe Overstreet Rd.)
Red-Cockaded Woodpecker (3 at Three Lakes WMA along the Florida Trail)
Brown-Headed Cowbird (Carlos thought he saw a red-eyed individual flying by with the flock; pay attention to the cowbird flocks at the end of Joe Overstreet Road for possible Shiny or Bronzed)
So it was a good day. A big miss for the day was Crested Caracara. We had our eyes peeled all the way down Canoe Creek Road and we went really slow down Joe Overstreet and even stopped to scan several distant tree lines or tall snags: nada! Also we somehow got through the day with no Gray Catbirds or Northern Cardinals. If you could see me, I'm shrugging my shoulders.
Orlando, Orange Co.
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