Friday, April 13, 2007

Pines in the Everglades

Many people think the Everglades is all swampland. With a few feet of elevation above sea level you get semi arid pine lands with an understory of palms. Wild turkeys can live here. We saw Eastern bluebirds, brown headed nuthatches here - both very rare in the Everglades. The bluebirds were a pair, hopefully nesting there.

We came back at night to hear barred owls, but only heard one nighthawk and a chuck will's widow (web picture added below). Both birds are nightjars which are nocturnal and which sleep on tree trunks or limbs during the day. Their pattern and coloration make them difficult to spot.

Night hawks actually nest in Manhattan and I have seen and heard them in mid summer around Central Park, Rockefeller Center and on Irving Place. I love hearing them - a most reassuring loud affirming "yhhaank."

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