Fourteen birders joined me today for the TAS trip to STA-5/6 in Hendry County. A flock of thirteen Roseate Spoonbills flew over as we assembled at our meeting place on Snake Road in Broward County. Several Crested Caracara and numerous wading birds, including Wood Stork and Black-crowned Night-Heron, were spotted as we made our way to STA-5/6.
Waiting for us at the entrance was Margaret England, of Hendry-Glades Audubon Society, who continues to arrange these wonderful tours. Margaret suggested that we explore an area new to me in the southern section of the STA. Both Black-bellied and Fulvous Whistling Ducks were found in this area. Waterfowl diversity was otherwise low today; among the numerous Ring-necked Ducks were a few Blue-winged Teal and American Wigeon. Gadwall and Northern Shoveler were reported by a group from Collier County.
Raptors seen during the tour included Black and Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Bald Eagle, Northern Harrier, Red-shouldered Hawk, American Kestrel and Peregrine Falcon. Lesser Yellowlegs was the only shorebird seen. Other birds of note included American and Least Bittern, Sora (heard), Purple Gallinule, Gray-headed Swamphen, Limpkin, Yellow Warbler, Savannah and Swamp Sparrow and Eastern Meadowlark. A wintering Tropical Kingbird was reported by Margaret, but neither we nor the group from Collier were able to relocate it.
On our way to lunch in Clewiston, we spotted several Scissor-tailed Flycatchers and a single Snail Kite. Upon our return to our starting point on Snake Road, a flock of about fifty American White Pelicans were seen soaring overhead.