Thursday, December 29, 2011

Digiscoping the Circle B Bar Reserve! - 23 Dec 2011

Robin and I drove her mom down to Lakeland on the 20th and 21st, then spent the better part of the 22nd doing maintenance on the house.  Since space in the car was tight, and we were flying home I decided to leave the DSLR equipment home and concentrate on digiscoping this trip.

Friday morning rolled around and I had the morning to spend at the Circle B Bar Reserve in Lakeland, FL. A heavy fog had rolled in, and I needed to use GPS to find the reserve, as the roads were obscured by fog.  Luckily, though, it burnt off quickly, and by 9 - 9:30 am the skies were clear and temps were in the mid 70's.

I walked the reserve from the nature center and Marsh Rabbit Run trails to the far ends of the large ponds and had wonderful opportunities to see and digiscope the numerous birds frequenting the place.  Black-bellied Whistling Ducks were everywhere, with flocks of 1 - 3 dozen flying in all directions.  American Coot, Common Gallinule, Great Blue Herons, White and Glossy Ibis, Wood Stork, Great, Snowy and Cattle Egrets, Red-shouldered Hawks, Palm Warblers, Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers, Turkey and Black Vultures, Double-crested Cormorants, and Fish Crows were seen by the dozen.  Limpkin were also common, but more widely scattered.  Non-avian sightings included Alligators, Wild Pigs, Gulf Fritillary butterflies, Armadillos, River Otters and numerous turtles.  Digiscoping was a blast, and the following images were captured using the Zeiss 85T*Fl, 45X W eyepiece, Nikon Coolpix P6000, and homemade adaptor:

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