On my way back to Cedar Key from the Refuge this morning, I saw a Swallowtail Kite! This is the earliest I have ever seen one back. In the past few years, they have been sighted the first few days of March, and usually by then there are more signs of spring. There are very few flowers blooming in the butterfly garden or throughout the refuge, but take heart! The arrival of the Swallowtail Kites means that spring is very, very close!
When it comes to picking cold days for our nature walks, I am doing a pretty good job! Not that I plan it that way, it just seems to be turning out that our scheduled walks are on the coldest days of the month. Oh well, Sally Beveridge and I thoroughly enjoyed the day – definitely, we didn’t have to worry about mosquitoes, “no-seeums”, alligators or snakes! But we did have a crystal blue sky and a gorgeous walk.
This 5 mile walk was intended to be a walk in nature, not a bird watching or plant identification walk and walk we did! But we saw plenty of birds anyway, including a pair of nesting Bald Eagles, a flock of wild turkeys and a Pileated Woodpecker, as well as numerous small birds. What we really loved seeing was the path we walked along full of animal tracks and rarely a human foot print especially when we got further into the woods!
On the walk, we viewed a vast salt marsh, crossed fresh water swamps, sandhill pine habitat and mixed deciduous woodland. We saw lots of scat from wild pigs and fox. We could hear the wind overhead, but we were sheltered enough in the woods to be plenty warm! It was a great walk!!
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The Again Amazing Silent Auction
More than 60 items have been contributed for the, once again, amazing Silent Auction. Remember your check book!! Here is a preview: