Friday, January 27, 2012

January 27 and 29, 2012 Fork-tailed Flycatcher in Florida

After reading a number of posts about a Fork-tailed Flycatcher near Ruskin, Florida I decided to take a quick run over to look for it since I was in the area for a few days. We arrived at 3:00pm and after a short while spotted the flycatcher at a distance sitting on a fence line. Had good views through the scope before it disappeared. At around 3:45pm it reappeared at the end of Lost River Trail and sat in one of its favorite trees and put on a wonderful display fly-catching. At that point we noticed that one of its outer tail feathers was missing. This was a first for my North America list, #715.

Fork-tailed Flycatcher

Fork-tailed flycatcher missing outer tail feather. 

Coming in for a landing. 

Perched in one of its favorite trees, the Fork-tailed Flycatcher would sit for a while before fly catching. 

The Fork-tailed flycatcher is a casual visitor to eastern North America. Most records are from the spring and fall season but a few occur during winter in Florida and Texas. 

Spent a couple of hours birding Fort DeSoto on January 29th. With the great weather there were lots of visitors to the park. At the North Beach a small number of shorebirds were noted including 16 Red Knot, 6 Black-bellied Plover and 3 Wilson's Plover. In the nearby woods, both Palm and Yellow-rumped Warblers were plentiful, flitting about feeding.

American Oystercatcher

American Oystercatcher  feeding.

Forster's Tern stretching.

A Loggerhead Shrike waits for the right moment.

It changes perches before it strikes its prey.

A successful catch! 

A young  Royal  Tern still begging for food. 

Winter plumage Ruddy Turnstone feeding on the beach.


Turkey Vultures were very common. 

Wilson's Plover 

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