On October 9, 2014, the day started with a drive of an hour or so heading toward the nature area. It is one of many areas where in many days gone by rice was grown. Dikes were built so that area could be flooded. Sluice gates and other means to control the water were implemented. This has left very large areas where nature can return and hunting and nature watch can be enjoyed.
As we entered the region on a sand road we were greeted by an alligator sunning on the road. It took it a while to decide to slide into the the growth along the road. It did leave us a memento to observe. As good students of nature, we opted to leave it undisturbed for others to see.
(Remember to click on image to enlarge it. Use back arrow to return.)
Driving further into the property we observed several biomes. There were many oaks with their spreading limbs covered with Spanish moss.(Did you know that Henry Ford used this moss to stuff the upholstery on his early autos?) There were stands of pines with their tall straight trunks.
There was also an area of marsh with many colors of plant life and a clearing where we could stop and use our binoculars to glass the marsh for birds. (No worry about blocking the road. No traffic although we met a gentleman who frequently travels several hours to “bird” the reserve.) Lou has a eye for detail and usually spots the specials first.
Looking out over the marshy area she spotted a tree with what looked like ducks in it.
On closer observation, the are ducks. Whistling ducks to be sure. It always amazes me to see web feet in a tree. I believe that these are Black Belly Whistling Ducks. They do have a whistle in their call although we did not hear it.
This was only the beginning of our tour but there enough pictures here to make a large file for slower Internet connections. I will post part 2 in a few days, time permitting.