Florida Day 6 and 7

Monday 3/12:

Today’s goals were Florida Scrub-Jay and Purple Gallinule. Up at dawn (quite easy down there), I headed to the nearby Jupiter Ridge area. There were two trails, a short one and a long one. I figured I’d start with the short and then do the long if necessary. Halfway around I found a couple Mottled Ducks but no jays. Fortunately, almost back to the car I heard an odd call that sounded vaguely familiar and I very quickly had 2 Scrub-Jays flying around. In and out in 25 minutes.

Mottled Duck

Florida Scrub-Jay

From here, it wasn’t too long a ride to Loxahatchee. After checking the visitor center, I did the cypress trail. Not much for birds but I had a Phantom Darner on the trail and lots of saddlebags and stuff behind the building.

Phantom Darner

young male Roseate Skimmer

I then headed to the Marsh Trail and worked my way to the far corner, stopping as I found things (including a posing Limpkin, a Florida Baskettail, and various things I’d seen earlier on the trip). Finally at the back, I found a couple Purple Gallinule.


Purple Gallinule

Working back out, I had Hyacinth Glider and Scarlet Skimmer, plus more gallinules. Back at the car, I decided to head back to Bill Baggs and give the La Sagra’s another try.

Hyacinth Glider

female Scarlet Skimmer

That turned out to not be a great decision. It was hot and pretty birdless. I hung out for about 2 hours with no sign of the flycatcher and a quick walk to the lighthouse didn’t get the cormorant either. And once I returned home, I found out that Smooth-billed Anis were being reported again, which would have been a much better use of my time.

Eventually I gave up and headed out to find food. I plugged Subway into the gps and found one that was in downtown with no obvious parking. Instead, I headed up to Fort Lauderdale and figured I’d find something along Las Olas. There were places, all of which were way fancier and costlier than I wanted. I gave up and found a Five Guys nearby. Good but no Larkburger.

I then found the hotel (Rodeway Inn, a dump). I cleaned up the car and went to return it. The hotel offered a shuttle back, but I was too tired to figure out where to call and get it, so I just grabbed a taxi and got back to do all the packing.

Tuesday 3/13:

Up early for a 6:00 shuttle. Breezed through checkin and security, easy flight to Atlanta. Enough time in Atlanta to grab some snacks, and then an easy flight back to Boston (other than a long delay on the runway taking off, apparently a plane had driven into a ditch or something and we had to go to the further end possible). Back home midafternoon.