We will be out and about much of this week (bringing back lots of pictures, I hope). I should be able to link and visit others from the IPAD, but it's hard to post from it. So this is a combination close-to-home pictures over the last couple of weeks -- to share with a larger than usual combination of memes. Thank you to all of the hosts.
BUTTERFLY WALK, MANATEE PARK
I counted over a dozen Monarch caterpillars on the Milkweed plants. The Garden Club that maintains the flowers wanted to use all native Florida plants, but the caterpillars ate the native milkweed down to nothing in no time at all. So the club decided to include the imported Giant Milkweed. These plants are larger in area and with larger leaves, serving as host plants for many caterpillars.
WHERE THE EAGLES ARE
This is the horse pasture where the world-famous Fort Myers Eagles live. Harriet hatched two eggs last week, so everyone is on nest watch. Our Eagle family has had some interesting times since I posted about them last year and I will tell you more about that another time. (With good news from the nest, I hope.)
SIX MILE CYPRESS SLOUGH
This wonderful County Park remains one of my favorite places ever. After several dryer-than-usual years, this year has made up for it by being wetter-than-ever, even now during the dry season here. And while I don't love rain, it is good to see the Slough full of water and the foliage green instead of brown.
MANATEES AT THE PARK -- the real reason it is here
Not the best pictures, but while I love the flowers and butterflies and birds, the manatees really are the reason the park is here. The water was alive with them on Saturday. It's been colder this month so they flock to this section of the Orange River where the water is warmed by a nearby power plant. When the weather warms up, they will disburse again into the Caloosahatchie and the Gulf. These huge mammals don't feed while they are at the Park -- they are herbivores and there isn't too much for them to eat -- it is just kind of a giant hot-tub for them. (So it is almost impossible to get a picture of the whole animal -- they only poke their noses up once in a great while for a breath of air.) They can stay up to a week or so without eating. (I hope it warms up by then too).
BUNCHE BEACH - REDDISH EGRET