Our Natural Places

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Header Image: Spotted Beebalm (Monarda punctata) Early morning sunshine illuminated the forest’s shadowy places and dried the dampness left by last night’s dew. Insects roused from their torpor to start their daily routine of survival. Just above the bugs on the food chain, hungry birds also began their daily routine of survival. Slightly next in line on that food chain thing, a couple of humans raised binoculars in unison to watch the… Read More

Header Image: Great Egret Our current summer has caused childhood memories to flood my conscience lately. It is hot. I walk barefooted to the mailbox and as I cross the concrete driveway, my pace quickens as it seems I’m walking in a frying pan. As a kid, my feet were tough enough to walk on sandspurs without ill effect. A dish of ice cream last night (yes, I know, apparently verboten at… Read More

Header Image: Gulf Fritillary (Agraulis vanillae) on Brazilian Vervain (Verbena brasiliensis) Sweet, tart and juicy slices of tangerine were refreshing as we rested on the shore of the lake a couple of hours after sunrise. We had already seen a lot. New bird babies, morning flowers in bloom, ducks flying overhead and now that the dew was drying from the grass, insects were beginning their day. Earlier, we entered the Tenoroc Public… Read More

Header Image: Black-necked Stilt When is a birding patch not a patch? The word “patch” denotes something small. Talk to a birder about their local patch and it will usually turn out to be a city park, part of a forest, coastal area, wetland – but near home and with a chance to see a fair diversity of birds. The patch is a spot where a birder can go often and is… Read More

Header Image: Black-crowned Night Heron Florida has a unique combination of heat and humidity which can wilt the best of us at times. Late August typically provides us with afternoon thunderstorms which can help cool us down a bit, but at the expense of maintaining very high humidity. Wiping optics lenses for half an hour each morning becomes a reflex. In our area of central Florida, we average 115 days a year… Read More