Tag Archives: Tropical

A Different Type Of Shoot For Us – April 2015

While we do have many photo pages shot from other parts of the world anyone who follows this site will expect mostly New England based articles. Our typical short themed articles are local to our area.

After a long, and thankfully productive, winter we decided to take a photo trip south. We settled on Florida and the northern end of the region where the Everglades start.

All the locations we visited were either found on-line or suggested to us by local Florida photographers who found us wandering around and took pity on us.

With one exception we hiked on trails or state/public utility provided roads. We did find a great preserve that allowed us to drive along marshes and park anywhere. After a week on foot it was a welcome change.

I will say at first it was a little unsettling parking the rental car on a roadside dirt patch and following a flat trail through dirt and saw grass. I much preferred the places that had Rangers, a trailhead info booth, etc., however ultimately they all provided amazing scenery, wildlife, and some ravenous blood sucking bugs.

We didn’t know April was nearing the end of the dry season. This did affect our trail decision once we started. Some marshes were dry, just hard packed dirt and sharp saw grass, and the billions of hungry flies. Florida Panthers like this terrain but a search here produced bug bites, warning signs on what to do when facing panthers, and nothing more.  Oh yeah, wild pigs are a problem too.

Swamp land that did have water has shrunk to a small area. This actually helped us. The local wildlife population was in a more condensed area and easier to find. In some cases many had learned to live close to each other. Unfortunately for some the predators were also packed in close.

Day 2 we found some large Alligators in a swamp. Towards the end of the week we came across a pickup truck being loaded with them. I quickly learned how to look at the mud trails and see if the Alligators were using them too. Even for me it’s hard to miss a dinosaur track.

Over time this site and PassingByPhoto.com will share our photos and the related stories.

As always thanks for visiting.

Day Time Owls

Who knew ?

OK, really bad joke but I could not resist.

Owls are always associated with night. They hide during the day. Hunting and other activities are after dark. But not all Owls.

It seems in the Corkscrew swamp area, Florida near the start of the Everglades, the Barred Owls have evolved to be active during the day. There is more competition for food there at night and Hawks are an on going danger.

The Owl here was out in full daylight. I watched her hunt, fight with Red Shoulder Hawks to protect her young, and really just hang out.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

The Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary includes hiking trails and a boardwalk along a central lake. The preserve is 13,000 acres. During the dry season many of the residents are forced to congregate at one of the larger lakes. Great for photography, bad for the locals. Alligators swim right beside wading birds, Hawks and Owls prey on each other. In general it’s chaos for about a month.

Barred Owl
Barred Owl

The shots taken here were while a pair of Red Shoulder Hawks flew over head looking for the young Owlets. Mom (above) ran them off.