About 40 birders joined me for this morning's bird walk in the East Everglades. Many of those present also attended my Birding 101 class last night at Leica Store Miami. A Barn Owl was seen by a few early-arriving participants. Over seventy Killdeer were assembled near the parking area and a Solitary Sandpiper was seen in a puddle near the entrance gate. All of the participants were treated to the spectacle of thousands of wading birds that are now congregating in the new water impoundments constructed within the area known to local birders as the C-357 sparrow fields. The impoundments have been drained in the past two weeks and only a few puddles remain, but large numbers of waders continue to feed in these puddles. Hundreds of Wood Storks were present, along with large numbers of Great Egret, Black-crowned Night-Heron and White Ibis. Huge numbers of Turkey Vultures and smaller numbers of Black Vultures were also present. We saw over forty species of birds in all, plus a few reptiles, including a snapping turtle, a large gator or two and a couple of garter snakes. Here's the bird list:
Great Blue Heron
Little Blue Heron
Thanks to Leica Store Miami for providing high-quality loaner binoculars for many of today's participants!