On the same afternoon that the Roseate Spoonbills played musical trees, a number of other birds were active at the Orlando Wetlands Park rookery. Here’s the Part 2 post from that afternoon, with all the non-pink feathered fun!
The Black-bellied Whistling-ducks were active that afternoon. I checked on the Sandhill Crane nest, and when I didn’t see colts, I settled down on the far side of the bank to watch the whistlers. Their happy calls are one of my favorite things about visiting the wetlands.
I meandered over to the boardwalk, where I noticed a number of blue feathers in the air. The Tricolored Herons and Little Blue Herons are building nests in the same place as the Roseate Spoonbills. Birds definitely understand the concept of safety in numbers. The blue birds are fun to photograph because they dart in and out of the vegetation so quickly. Here a Little Blue sits on top of the Wood Stork’s favorite tree to pose in the setting sunlight.
A few minutes later, this Tricolored Heron flew by. He’s showing off his blue lores and breeding colors. He promised to bring nesting material the next time I come!
The stars of the evening — besides the spoonbills — were the two tiny Great Egret chicks. They couldn’t have been more than a day or two old. Mom stood protectively over them and regurgitated a nice dinner. This nest will be very popular with the photographers once the babies are a little bigger.
Too soon the game of Musical Trees was over, and I packed up my camera to leave. I was glad that I stuck my short lens in my vest, because the sunset was gorgeous. As usual, these are bracketed exposures that I merged using HDR software. By dialing in a small aperture (large f-number), I got the starburst effect from the sun.
Just one more. The sun played peek-a-boo with me from behind the trees as I walked the boardwalk back to my car. Images like these always make me want to go back the next day!
Want to learn more about nature photography at Orlando Wetlands?
Check out my Orlando Wetlands page with more information about the location, map, website, photography tips, etc. It is archived by date so you can see my images from previous visits. Maybe you'll be inspired for your own trip!
Planning a trip to Florida? Don't miss my Central Florida Bird Photography Locations reference guide!