Go to Top

Black Skimmer Colony

More from the Black Skimmer Colony

More from the Black Skimmer Colony - July 2015

Late afternoon is the best time at the Black Skimmer colony. The setting sun bathes the chicks in beautiful golden light as they eat fishRead More


Father’s Day at the Black Skimmer Colony

Father’s Day at the Black Skimmer Colony - July 2015

Another Father's Day at the Black Skimmer Colony, where the nesting is running early this year and the babies were already two weeks oldRead More


Other Birds at the Black Skimmer Colony

Other Birds at the Black Skimmer Colony - June 2015

There were more than Black Skimmers to photograph at the Black Skimmer Colony. Cormorants and terns and a surprise oystercatcher...Read More


Black Skimmer Colony Ramping Up

Black Skimmer Colony Ramping Up - May 2015

This year's first Black Skimmer colony visit yielded lots of skimming opportunities and plenty of piggy-back rides! Babies are on the way!!Read More


Food Fight!  Silly Laughing Gulls

Food Fight! Silly Laughing Gulls - August 2014

On my last trip to the beach, a pair of ladies made friends with a flock of Laughing Gulls, who staged some great mid-air food fights!Read More


Juvenile Black Skimmers in Flight

Juvenile Black Skimmers in Flight - July 2014

The juvenile Black Skimmers grow up so quickly! Already they are flying and skimming like their parents. Read More


Juvenile Black Skimmers Meet the Water

Juvenile Black Skimmers Meet the Water - July 2014

I returned to Indian Rocks hoping to see the juvenile Black Skimmers head to the water and maybe fly. The surprise was the newborn chicks!Read More


Week-Old Black Skimmers are Still Cute!

Week-Old Black Skimmers are Still Cute! - July 2014

The week-old Black Skimmers are no longer wet from the egg, but they are still pretty cute! My favorite shot was a big baby yawn...Read More


What a Mouthful!

What a Mouthful! - July 2014

Tonight's is going to be a short post, as I am putting the final details on my photography presentation that I will give this Friday as guest speaker at the Trout Lake Nature Center.  I'm really looking forward to sharing some fun images with some great people.  While I've been approached several times through my website to do a presentation like this, this is the first time that I've had …Read More


More Cute Baby Black Skimmers

More Cute Baby Black Skimmers - July 2014

I returned to the beach for a second evening with the cute baby Black Skimmers, tiny clowns who are such a joy to photograph!Read More


Black Skimmer Hatchlings (Cuteness Alert!)

Black Skimmer Hatchlings (Cuteness Alert!) - July 2014

A visit to the beach with Black Skimmer hatchlings always yields cute photographic moments! Adorable shots from my favorite summer locationRead More


Tug of War – Black Skimmer Chicks

Tug of War – Black Skimmer Chicks - June 2014

Recently hatched Black Skimmer chicks are always fun to photograph, especially when they play tug-of-war over a needlefish!Read More


Double-Crested Cormorant Still Looking Spiffy!

Double-Crested Cormorant Still Looking Spiffy! - June 2014

A Double-crested Cormorant surprised me this weekend. Still in breeding plumage, his bright blue eye and mouth are awesome!Read More


Juvenile Shorebirds from Last Summer

Juvenile Shorebirds from Last Summer - February 2014

I found some images from last summer that I had never processed.  In August I spent several mornings at Indian Rocks Beach photographing the nesting Black Skimmers, but the skimmers weren't the only birds who posed for me.  The juvenile shorebirds also put on a show for the camera.  I especially liked the juvenile terns, who had reached the point that they were almost-self sufficient, but they didn't know it …Read More


Teenage Skimmers Learning to Skim!

Teenage Skimmers Learning to Skim! - August 2013

This weekend I returned to the Black Skimmer colony at Indian Rocks Beach. It's been five weeks now since the babies hatched, and three weeks since I photographed them as adorable two-week-olds.  I figured they were flying and learning to skim by now, so I headed over in the morning when the sun best illuminates the waves and the ocean.  I was greeted by a colony of teenagers - almost …Read More


More From Indian Rocks Beach

More From Indian Rocks Beach - August 2013

I hope you're not tired of reading about the Black Skimmers yet, because today's post brings you more from Indian Rocks Beach! One of my goals for this summer was to capture the interaction between skimmers in mid-air during the nesting season.  I like to call these interactions "skimmer skirmishes," when two adults take to the skies to fly at each other to resolve what I'm guessing is a territorial …Read More


Two-Week Old Black Skimmers

Two-Week Old Black Skimmers - August 2013

Several weeks ago, I returned to the Black Skimmer colony at Indian Rocks Beach to photograph the two-week old Black Skimmers. The little guys had grown up quite a bit since I photographed them as newborns.  Some would say that the two-week old Black Skimmers are less cute than when they were tiny babies, but I thought they had a lot of fun personality.  They no longer sit patiently under …Read More


Learning to Fly

Learning to Fly - August 2013

I returned to the Black Skimmer colony two weeks ago to check on the babies.  It had been two weeks since I was there to photograph the day-old chicks, and I knew the babies had grown a lot.  I was hoping to catch them in that big-kid-but-not-yet-teenager stage, and I succeeded!  I'll have more pictures soon, but in the meantime, I thought it'd be fun to share a little sequence …Read More


Black Skimmer Chick Fillets!

Black Skimmer Chick Fillets! - August 2013

The weekend after I returned from Maine, my dad and I drove to Indian Rocks Beach to check on the Black Skimmer colony.  We found that most of the eggs laid after Tropical Storm Andrea had hatched, and the colony was full of tiny newborn Black Skimmer chicks.  They are so cute!! My friend Debbie from south Florida drove up to see the skimmers, too, and we had a blast …Read More


Skimming, Scratching, and Shadows at the Black Skimmer Colony

Skimming, Scratching, and Shadows at the Black Skimmer Colony - July 2013

Cuteness alert!  The Black Skimmer colony at Indian Rocks Beach was doing very well in the week before I left for Maine.  The birds were again on eggs after Tropical Storm Andrea wiped out most of their colony.  These birds are more stubborn than bad weather.  A few surviving chicks from the first batch stumbled around, learning to use their legs, while their younger cousins were being incubated just inches …Read More


Victorious Babies at the Black Skimmer Colony

Victorious Babies at the Black Skimmer Colony - June 2013

One of my favorite summertime photo opportunities is at a Black Skimmer colony in Indian Rocks Beach.  The skimmers come to nest on the beach in front of some condos, and it's very easy to photograph them with their babies. This year I went over to the colony with my dad for Father's Day.  He loved it! Unfortunately, Mother Nature sometimes challenges the birds with tropical storms and hurricanes that …Read More


Bittersweet Skimmer Colony Memories

Bittersweet Skimmer Colony Memories - July 2012

For a year I've been looking forward to the hatching of a new crop of Black Skimmers at a colony located on the West Coast of Florida.  Approximately 500 adults return to the same patch of beach to make their nests and raise their chicks.  Closely supervised by the Audubon bird stewards, these birds co-exist with happy beachgoers.  "Aw!  It's a baby!  Look, the babies match the color of the …Read More


“Mobile Home” Gets Recognition

“Mobile Home” Gets Recognition - August 2011

My image "Mobile Home" was honored on Flickr in the Florida Outdoors July photo contest for "Cutest Baby Bird." Thanks to Jamie for judging (and for selecting my shot!) Now I get to choose the topic and judge the August contest. The Internet certainly is cool for connecting with people and sharing photography.


Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary

Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary - July 2011

The Black Skimmer colony that I posted about yesterday is at the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, a non-profit bird hospital. I enjoyed walking around and seeing the birds that are under treatment there. They have so many pelicans! Black-Crowned Night Herons hung around all over, offering nice photo ops. When you walk out to the beach, there are birds everywhere. There's the skimmer colony, but the skimmers are just some of …Read More


You’ve Come a Long Way, Babies!

You’ve Come a Long Way, Babies! - July 2011

I stopped at Indian Rocks Beach to visit the Black Skimmer colony yesterday after my morning at Fort De Soto.  It was 10:15 by the time I got there, so the light was already pretty harsh, but I couldn't resist the temptation to see the little chicks all grown up.  As a reminder, here's what they looked like back in mid-June… Here's what they look like now! The babies are …Read More


A Fish Tale: Day 2 at the Black Skimmer Colony

A Fish Tale: Day 2 at the Black Skimmer Colony - June 2011

Seeing is believing…and yet who can believe that such tiny Black Skimmer chicks can swallow fish almost as big as they are? :) I went back to the Black Skimmer colony this morning.  After the incredible sunset last night, I knew not to expect great light angles on the colony this morning.  So I was happy when the sun went behind the clouds, providing nice gentle lighting conditions that allowed …Read More


Black Skimmer Colony: Day 1

Black Skimmer Colony: Day 1 - June 2011

I love my off-Fridays!  Rich and I took advantage of our three-day weekend to drive out to Indian Shores, where there is a nesting colony of Black Skimmers.  The colony is located outside of the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, a really neat non-profit bird hospital.  The sanctuary rehabilitates birds and releases them back into the wild.  We saw Screech Owls, a Redhead, several Roseate Spoonbills, and lots of Brown Pelicans.  Dyeyo …Read More