Friday, November 27, 2015

November is a great month to visit Largo Central Nature Preserve

Tri-colored heron at Largo Central NP
Fall is a good time to visit the parks. There are not as many snowbirds and vacationers, so you sometimes have the parks to yourself. Some of the male birds are coming into their breeding plumage. You can see how much the awkward looking babies from this spring have grown.

Young osprey at Largo Central NP
Young night heron sleeping at Largo Central  NP

It has been a warmer fall then usual, so the alligators are more active. I spotted two alligators at Largo Central Nature Preserve on the same day.

Huge Alligator at Largo Central Nature Preserve
 One alligator, approximately 12 ft. long, was in middle of the pond. He leaped in the air and quickly swam away in response to a group of  noisy teenagers. A group of nervous moorhens nearby, probably sighed in relief. A smaller alligator rested on the opposite side of the boardwalk. Usually I only see the larger alligator, who would probably be lying motionless on the edge of the pond, soaking up the sun. 

I rarely see snakes in the parks, especailly in November, but along the edge of the pond in some aquatic plants I photographed a young water moccasin. I felt very thankful for the boardwalks that day!

Young Water Moccasin at Largo Central Nature Preserve

Everyone was not shopping on Black Friday. Dylan DeSio, a Seminole, FL resident home from college this weekend, caught a nice 2 lb. bass in the recently stocked pond at Largo Central Nature Preserve. 

Dylan DeSio with a 2 lb bass  caught in Largo Central NP
 Early November, there did not seem to be as many birds at Largo Central and elsewhere.  There are always moorhens, great white egrets, cormorants, pied-billed grebes, anhingas, ibis, yellow-crowned night heron, tricolored and little blue herons, but not the sheer numbers all at once.  I did not see the great blue herons, roseate spoonbills, shovelers, etc. The mallards were in a flock across the canal at the East Bay Golf Course. The fish and otter was jumping out of the water, but the turtles were not sunning themselves.

Great White Egret at Largo Central NP
Cormorants at Largo Central NP

A bow-legged Ibis at Largo Central NP

Anhinga, wings drying, at Largo Central NP
Limpkin at Largo Central NP

Pied-billed Grebe at Largo Central NP
Brown anole on boardwalk at Largo Central NP

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