Sunday, February 14, 2016

The Critters of the Big Cypress National Preserve

I keep saying my next post would be Big Cypress..and finally here it is..I feel that I saw so many great birds just getting here...that ultimately I wondered what would I see?

 If you have any critter problems you can call this guy...

Notice the first item on his bullet list...haha.  Im  a BIG FAN of the Walking Dead...its the perfect escape series for me.  Im  not afraid of ghosts or zombies...Spiders YES. 

It was late afternoon when we pulled into Monument Lakes Campground in Big Cypress National Preserve.  Its a nice CG with a pond and  resident white Ibis, and gators.  Here is our spot #T1 Its a non electric CG there is a bathroom no showers...

The mighty Casey is on guard...he is such a joy to have around! HE really loves to travel, he adapts to life on the road very well..We stayed here for 3 nights! 

I made sure to keep Casey away from the tall grass...when we had our dinner an entire cubby of Northern Bobwhite Quail came out of the grass to have dinner too!!

This white Ibis  mom has 2 immature chicks with her...

Our first night around 8 pm the wind picked up really fast and we had quite a down pour that lasted a couple hrs so we were pretty slow getting up the next morning...

Guess who broke her OWN cardinal rule of never leaving ANYTHING out overnight...I guess you can see the soggy puddle in the seat of my chair..

SO the short version of the story is this...I told the Camp Host I had reserved this same site again, so I would leave my wet chair and my wet steps and foot rug at the site to let it dry while I went exploring that day she said "fine no problem"...So off I went.  I got back about 4 pm...right away I saw no chair no steps and no rug!! GREAT So immediately I went over, she met me at the door..
"I guess you're looking for your chair and other things"? Ahhhyes...
SO it turns out that she was so late going around to hang the reserved plaques out the maintenance man came around thought this stuff was left behind and took it home with him!! Finders keepers?

So he showed up right before the sun set with my belongings and his apology...And my stuff was bone dry...the next day I was carrying my chair on the way to sit by the pond and relax for an hr and they teased me that I didn't have to carry my chair around to keep it from being

After breakfast I walked the Henry Sorter Boardwalk and saw some awesome bromeliad  getting ready to bloom..I really enjoyed seeing them up in the trees.  A Ranger told me they don't die after blooming, but the cultivated ones I've owned in the past I dunno.

An Eastern Phoebe had a look at me...

A very still Green heron let me take his photo...

A very good look at his feathers...this is my fav of the Herons...and when he extends that neck its amazing!!

And this little Blue Heron is the runner up on my Favs List...

...some lovely Swamp Lillies

really stand out in this sea of green!  Lots of moss, lily pads, ferns, and bromeliads cover everything in the swamp...

 some of the birds I saw along the boardwalk...

A yellow rump warbler...

And then I did a drive on the H P Williams wildlife drive and later on after lunch I drove on the Monroe Station Drive...These are some of the birds and other critters I saw...

A very gangly Tri-Colored Heron

A common moorhen or gallinule...

A belted Kingfisher still for just a moment...

did you ever take a good look at an Anhinga's feet?  NO wonder they can swim so well...

They are really quite a striking bird with such rich colors in their feathers...

the Anhinga

And yet another Cold Blooded animal  for your enjoyment...

This looks like paradise lost.....

With all the recent rain there is water in places where it soon will be dry ...OH who do we have down on the right side?? 

Is she not the cutest? I read once somewhere the farther south you go the smaller the deer get...This little gal is pretty small compared to the white tailed deer we see in SC ..

A pretty tri color heron 

...wades belly deep.....while 

And my favorite Egret the Snowy with his Golden Slippers hunts on dry land...

This fox squirrel came out into the road begging for a handout...He sure was a beautiful color also saw a solid black one too...they are red, black and variations of both...

the swamp opens up to some very pretty streams in spots...

Back at the GC all was well and we had yet another night of torrential was cozy and warm in the DLEX and Casey and I slept like a couple of babies!! Our plan was to head to Shark Valley the next day and get there early to insure we get parking as the lot fills very fast.  

Eleanor Roosevelt: You must do the thing you think you can not.


  1. Another beautiful day of gorgeous birds and the deer is beautiful. The gator is a little unsettling but with your zoom I know you didn't have to get to close.

    1. I kept my distance...but you wouldn't believe the Asian tourists who crouched close to it in order to get a selfie with an alligator!

    2. I have seen those Asian tourists do some really dumb things.
      Just this past summer we had a few hiking in the desert without a drop of water. The woman couldn't go any futher so they ALL left her to get help, she didn't make it

    3. Holy cow that's horrible...people forget the Real World is an unforgiving place.

  2. Looks like a great visit. You such got lots of terrific pictures. Casey is a lucky boy.

    1. Casey is the perfect pet...he is small ans no fear so he loves adventure.

  3. Those herons are great, and some wonderful pictures from this trip. You'll have to get a sign made up saying that "This site is occupied by [ vehicle reg number]" and hammer it in when you leave your spot.

    1. Well my little paid ticket was attached to the picnic table..he took that too!

  4. You see so much. It's wonderful. I'm envious, but so happy that you showed the pictures. Now I have fox squirrel on my 'must see' list.

    1. Well Im more envious of your freedom, so count yourself admired. I got a huge kick out of the way they stand up in the road stopping traffic then expect a cracker or chip to hit the


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