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March 27, 2005

The Experience

This has been a strange week. As I mentioned in Saturday’s weblog, the weather has been very unusual. The heat has been almost unbearable. For mid March high temperatures close to 90°F is ridiculous. After a few days of rain late last week and the rising temperatures this week, the mosquito population has blossomed becoming a nuisance. Because of these two factors I have spent a fair amount of time this week without a camera in my hands and inside.

Despite the heat and mosquitoes I did make it to Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve again as well as other places in the Big Cypress Swamp. Friday also found me birding my way back south after an early morning trip to the Ft. Lauderdale airport. I have found very little bird activity despite reports of migration starting around the state. Either I am losing my touch or there just aren’t many migrants around when I am trying to find them.

I have some big plans for this upcoming week including a trip to the largest wading bird rookery in the area. A drop in temperature is forecast for tomorrow and will be a welcome relief. Hopefully it will be a very productive week.

The Photos

Sunrise and Cypress Dome – Big Cypress National Preserve

This is yet another image from two weeks ago when I spent the weekend with James Shadle ( tagging along with his workshop. I also shot a panoramic version of this that included the cypress dome with the rest of the landscape but it did not turn out quite as I had hoped.

Anhinga Chick – Anhinga Trail, Everglades National Park

This is probably my last image in the series from this nest. I may try one more time if I am in town later in the week and near the nest. However, the young are starting to get their adult plumage and usually only one is in the nest at a time.

Green Anole – Big Cypress National Preserve

This Green Anole was climbing around the pavilion where I was eating lunch and hiding from the heat this week. While I was sitting there I saw him turn from bright green to dark brown in less than a minute. It was pretty remarkable to watch.

Delicate Ionopsis – Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve

          The Delicate Ionopsis is the first orchid I have found in Fakahatchee Strand. This afternoon we found three different individuals all in bloom. From what I have read, these are some of the most common and popular orchids both in Fakahatchee as well as with collectors. It was really cool to see them in the wild and I am going to try and photograph as many of the 44 species of orchids found in Fakahatchee as possible.