Just before we came across this beauty, we could hear what sounded like at least two owls calling back and forth quite loudly. Looking ahead on the trail where the sound was coming from I could see photographers with huge lenses and tripods pointing their cameras into a wooded area. Sadly, my first thought was that these photographers were playing owl calls over some loudspeakers trying to attract owls. When we approached, several things became clear. First, there was only one photographer, tripod, big lens, and his wife standing nearby with no gear whatsoever (I really hate old eyes). Secondly, nobody was playing owl sounds except the owls themselves. This beautiful Barred Owl was perched nicely right out in the open, calling to what I assume was a mate in a nearby tree.
This beautiful lady was resting and drying off under the pier. They are such graceful birds. But, perhaps my favorite thing about anhingas is that their call sounds to me like someone laughing at their own thoughts. .
I have noticed in the past few months that the anhingas have self-segregated along gender lines on the trail near the lake. The females are hanging out in one area, and the males in another. I began to wonder if this is typical of anhingas, or even of other bird species. Upon researching, I discovered that there is quite a bit of scientific research into self-segregation along gender lines in the animal kingdom. Some potential reasons for this separation proffered are: size differences, hunting technique, socialization, and differences in diet. .
This got me thinking about one of the gender differences I have found when attempting to identify birds. Most of the pictures on bird identification sites are of male birds. In some species, I have found only one image of a female/immature male, yet multiple images of the males, usually in breeding plumage. As I was researching the gender segregation, I came across an article (Davis, 2019) that examined the disparity of representation of birds in museum and research collections across gender lines, with only 25% of bird specimens being female birds. Wow! I guess it’s good to be a lady when researchers are out collecting specimens!! .
Have you noticed gender segregation in the birds around you? .
* RAINBOW MONARCHS AND MANATEES CANVAS PRINTS NOW AVAILABLE *
I am taking pre-orders for canvas prints of my newest piece THIS WEEK ONLY! A colorful way to bring a bit of the Florida springs into your home! 18x24" quality wrapped canvas prints are $100 each, ($117 total with shipping and sales tax). Each print is made to order and signed on the back. I will be getting these printed at the end of the week so I will need all pre-orders in by Friday. Your print will arrive to you in the next 2-3 weeks or less. If you would like a different sized canvas (smaller or larger) I can get it printed special for you, just shoot me a DM for pricing :) 8x10" and 4x6" paper prints framed are also available as well and I already have these on hand. They will soon be listed on my Etsy Shop: etsy.com/shop/sammwehmanart <3
This original piece is for sale as well and is 30x36" on very thick hand-stretched gallery wrapped canvas. Message me with any questions! :)
My hawk visitor shown in my IG stories this morning. I think it might be a Red Shouldered Hawk. I’m crap at Hawk ID, so if I’m wrong, let me know. He was in this tree behind my patio for over 2 1/2 hours! 😱
A Florida panther and her two kittens using a low water crossing on your Conservation Collier Caracara Prairie Preserve and CREW Cypress Dome Trails. This female is well known to area biologists due to a healed scar visible on her back leg. Wildlife cameras placed throughout the preserves offer the opportunity to monitor the health and success of this trio over the many months they have been photographed thriving on this large, contiguous swath of conservation land. Captures like this are a great reminder to always keep an eye out for unexpected wildlife tracks along the trails of your Conservation Collier preserves! Big thanks to Tom Mortenson for collecting this video footage.
If you are in the market for some beautiful pottery then take a ride over to Potter Express/Bamboo Farm in Punta Gorda Florida. They have four acres of amazing pottery and gorgeous fountains. If you get tired of walking around they will loan you a golf cart to tool around in! We had fun exploring but there was so much to choose from that we couldn't decide so we'll have to go back! #potteryexpressandbamboofarm#puntagorda#waterlogue
Dolphins love our wake! If fishing isn’t your thing, we can take you out for an eco-friendly trip in search of native wildlife like Manatees, Dolphin, Eagles, nesting birds and you’ll even have the chance to collect beautiful seashells along the shore. Plus you’ll learn interesting facts about our fascinating Florida ecosystem and a little about Naples history from your Captain who is a seasoned local, Naples native, fishing guide!