Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Naples, FL Part 1 of 3


We travelled to Naples KOA to meet up with  fellow Workampers. Many were ones that we had spent an enjoyable summer with at the KOA Bar Harbor in Maine. It was a 165 mile drive from our home near Okeechobee to the KOA in Naples. It took 3 hours. We tow a Honda CRV. Honda states that towing over 60 mph can damage the transmission so we go 60 or less. It is also more comfortable at that speed.

We arrived a day before the others that were not working there. It was early afternoon so we made camp then headed out to explore an area we had not spent much time in. We headed for Everglades City and the Everglades National Park. We had previously visited the eastern Everglades Park with Chris from England. The western part is quite different.

Of course we looked for birds. They are so numerous that you really do not have to look. They are just there. These little birds were on the dock at the national park center. There are several species represented in this shot.

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Some of them made a neat row on the root of a mangrove. Look close to see them.

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Then there were the ever present pelicans. There are two types of  pelican in Florida. These are brown pelican. The white pelican stays out to sea. With binoculars, white pelican can be seen on Lake Okeechobee but never on shore. Note different head coloration. The white headed bird, like many of us with white hair, is a more mature individual.



Being good Ohio Staters, we could not pass up including a picture of a common butterfly in these parts. Can you guess the name of the butterfly? (Hint, look at the large eyes.)

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If you guessed Hawkeye, you are in the wrong state. they are BUCKEYES too. LOL.

Our next stop was the Big Cypress Bend Boardwalk. Boardwalks are always interesting as you never know what you will see. Notice the reflection of the foliage in the smooth clear water in this first image. The water is very clear as it has flowed through the Sea of Grass on it’s way to the Gulf of Mexico.


Our first treat was a view of a green heron. He/she would not pose for a picture so I had to snap a few. This is the one with the least movement. There were a pair of them just off the walkway but the other, true to the nature of green herons, was quite elusive. We only had several glimpses of it.

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It is reported that this eagles nest was started over twenty years ago. It has not been used every year. It is much larger than the photo shows. It is over ten feet thick an twelve feet across. There is a protrusion on the boardwalk triangular shape for a tripod. When the eagles are present they set up a tripod and scope for viewing without blocking passage. Neat!


It was reported that a piliated woodpecker was hanging out at the end of the boardwalk. We heard it but never got to see it. It was getting darker when we arrived at the end. No one else was around so we sat and waited. We were rewarded by a visit from a pair of night herons. They are also shy but we were able to get a few decent shots. Both the green and the night heron have long necks to stretch out and catch prey but when sitting tight their necks seem to disappear as they fold them in.

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It was back to the campground to share goodies to eat and stories to tell with old friends and new acquaintances. The setting is as always the campfire.


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