Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)

Also known as Southern Waxwing, Canada Robin, Cedar Bird, Cherry Bird or Recellet, the Cedar Waxwing's Latin name literally means 'Silk-tail of the Cedars'. Waxwings were once known as Silk-tails in honor of their soft, smooth, silky plumage, and they were paid the dubious complement of being skinned and inserted into women's hats on an…

Read More

DICKCISSEL (SPIZA AMERICANA)

I am sure I am not alone when I say that this bird was a nemesis bird for me until I finally saw it, in all its glory, at the Celery Fields, in company with the munias, last spring. Each year one (or two) are seen in Sarasota County. They have come and gone, seen…

Read More

IN PRAISE OF PUMPERS AND RUMPERS!

 The other day I was having breakfast at that wonderful Gulf Drive Cafe on Anna Maria Island, when I saw a single bright yellowish bird with a rusty head and a broad eyebrow hopping around in the sand under the tables. It was of course a Palm Warbler, a bird we see more-or-less everywhere we…

Read More

AMERICAN BITTERN by Glynnis Thomas

Here’s the difference between the American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus) and its European counterpart the (Great) Bittern (Botaurus stellaris), and I’m not talking about description (there are some superficial plumage differences), or size (the Great Bittern is slightly larger). No, I’m talking about life-style. In winter, the American Bittern has it easy. It comes down from…

Read More

PURPLE MARTINS

Please join us as we monitor the progression of these wonderful birds - from nesting to eggs to babies and fledglings. Nest boxes will be checked Thursday and Sunday of each week at 11:00 am - weather dependent; and will continue until early May.  Please call the Nature Center to check on the morning of…

Read More

Wilson’s Snipe ( Gallinago delicate)

I was lucky enough to be on one of the berms at the Celery Fields at dusk the other day when a Wilson's Snipe flew in and fed out in the open just below me. I'm not a photographer but I carry a camera for moments such as these and when I later looked at…

Read More

Bobolink (Dolychonyx oryzivorus)

Bobolink (Dolychonyx oryzivorus) SRQ is such a great place for birders, isn’t it? The winter certainly has its charms with the arrival of ducks, rails, sparrows etc. And then the long awaited Spring migration can produce such marvels, especially in the Warbler species. However one of the most eagerly anticipated single bird species is surely…

Read More

Black-necked Stilt (Himantopus mexicanus)

The Bird with Outrageous Legs.... I know that the bird of the month should be the beautiful Pinecraft Wilson's Warbler....... or the handsome Dickcissel..... or even perhaps those plucky little Scaly-breasted Munias. What a triple treat we've had from those very obliging long time stayers. However my heart lifts when I see those amazing Black-necked Stilts,…

Read More

American Pipit (Anthus rubescens)

I've always had some interest in taxonomy but you can't spend ten days in Colombia with Bruce Anderson (co- author of 'The Bird Life of Florida') without realizing its true value in bird identification. Basically if you know the family and/or genus you have a better chance of narrowing down the bird. Recent sightings of…

Read More

Limpkin (Aramus guarana)

Limpkin (Aramus guarana) This month, to celebrate the opening of the Nature Centrer at the Celery Fields, I have chosen one of the most iconic birds of that marvelous  wetland area, a bird that many will travel far to see - the Limpkin. You could hardly visit the Celery fields without encountering one of these amazing…

Read More