Fishing Tutorial

I spent an hour wandering around Sawgrass Lake Park earlier this week. As before, my visit did not disappoint. While I was fascinated by it, this Tricolored Heron studiously ignored me. It obviously had bigger fish to fry (as it were).

The technique: stand perfectly still, snap up the tiny tidbit, shake off excess water and vegetation, rotate the fish with a quick flip, then swallow it whole. All of this takes place within a span of mere seconds, though the bird caught several fish while I was watching I felt fortunate to catch just a few photos of it in action!

A few bonus shots just because it was such a handsome bird!

Wood Rose, Revisited

Earlier this week I shared a beautiful Wood Rose bloom with a promise to capture a photo of the reason behind its common name. Yesterday I finally had the opportunity to return to that roadside and collect some of the ornate seed pods.

Thankfully, I was able to gather a handful of the pods for it would be a shame to crush these for their seeds – they are too pretty! The seeds I will plant in my yard so that hopefully next summer I won’t have to go as far to see this unique vine. Wish me luck!

Wood Rose

This bright flower caught my eye last weekend. Since it was growing along a roadside I presumed it was one of the many invasive morning glory species.

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Cutleaf Morning Glory (Merremia dissecta) is actually a native vine with useful medicinal properties. I will be heading back soon to gather some of the cool looking seed pods for my yard.

When I do, I’ll be sure to take some photos. It is also known as Wood Rose because the ornate pods look like wooden, wild roses.

Following Their Footsteps

Last week I shared some photos from my great grandparents’ visit to Sarasota from seventy years ago. While I was looking for those images I came across a couple that were snapped within three miles of where I currently live.

Had some fun over the weekend trying to find the locations and recreate those images. Luckily, there’s one small section of the seawall in Pass-a-grille Beach that still has those hexagonal pavers.

In hindsight I should have taken the images with me that day. Ah well, you get the general idea…

Busy as a Bee

Note that I didn’t say “busy bee” because although this creature resembles one, looks can be deceiving. This happens to be a sand wasp in the Sticitella genus.

Though relatively harmless to humans, they come by their common name, Butterfly-wolf Wasp honestly. They prey on small butterflies, stunning them before dragging them into their sandy burrows. A female can stuff as many as ten of them into her lair before laying her egg. After all her hatchling will be hungry!