What a long week this has been… I am anxiously awaiting tomorrow. I plan to take a second shot at finding the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher (and perhaps some Red-breasted Nuthatches) at MINWR. I shall let you all know if I am successful.
My plan was to go looking for that flycatcher on Monday, but I very deftly managed to lock my keys in the car at the Visitor Center. A brief story for your amusement: I have only been to MINWR once, earlier this year, during the summer. I decided, on this visit, to purchase the $15 annual pass and visit more often. I was so thrilled to find that, if I purchased a Federal Duck Stamp there, it would count as my annual pass. I bounded out to the car to retrieve some change for this purchase and, in my excitement, did not realize that my keys were in the passenger side seat where I had tossed them prior to using the button on the door to throw the lock. In fact, I did not realize that I was without my keys until about 2:30, when I decided to move from the Visitor Center to the next stop.
Just to put things in perspective, my area of Palm Bay is just north of the Indian River County line, MINWR is just south of the Volusia County line, and Brevard is the longest county in the state… point A and Point B are more than an hour from one another. I called my husband who had to leave work, go to the house, and then find the Visitor Center. Thankfully he arrived around 4:15, 15-20 minutes before they were to lock the gates and close up for the day. Also thankfully, he remained in much better spirits than I about the whole situation, because by that time, I needed someone to help me laugh it off. So… scheduled for tomorrow, is a full day at the refuge. I will find that flycatcher (hopefully)!
But, between the drive into the refuge and the visit to the center, I managed to log about 20 species. It is the first time I have seen a RTHB while birding (and only the second time I have seen a hummingbird in FL at all) and it is the first time I have seen Painted Buntings anywhere aside from my front yard feeders. I saw a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker for only the second time ever, and I logged a lifer shorebird as I stopped by the river on the way out… I’m not 100% certain on the ID yet, but I know it’s a lifer because there are so few IDed shorebirds on my list! 😀
I’m breaking up my post into thirds this morning, so photos and comments are to follow…