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Thursday, January 31, 2019

January 31, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I'm known as a Florida Manatee
See my nose, my back and my tail.
I'm way too big to get all in one shot
Dee tried, but it was to no avail.

(Very special Happy Birthday to my big sistah Shirley. This Manatee's for you:-)

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

January 30, 2019

Location: Satellite Beach, Gleason Park

I am a Softshell Turtle
I like fresh water habitats
I like to dig and bury myself in mud,
And I am quite speedy at that.

Sources: In case you forget, softshell turtles are insanely weird

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

January 29, 2019

Location: Satellite Beach, Gleason Park

I'm known as a White Ibis
I am a tactile feeder.
I eat everything from insects to fish
But I'm usually a crabby eater.

Sources: Audubon Guide to North American Birds

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Monday, January 28, 2019

January 28, 2019

Location: Sebastian, Fran Adams Park

I'm a Northern Mockingbird,
I'm grey, white and black, just like a Shrike.
But Shrike has a hooked beak,
And prefers to eat meat,
So other than color, we aren't much alike.

Sources: Shrikes Have an Absolutely Brutal Way of Killing Large Prey

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Sunday, January 27, 2019

January 27, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, T.m. Goodwin WMA

I am an Eastern Phoebe
I'm part of the Tyrant Flycatcher family.
We mostly eat insects, but in different ways -
Some of us sally and some of us glean.

Sources: EOL - Tyrant Flycatchers

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Saturday, January 26, 2019

January 26, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, T.M. Goodwin WMA

We are a pair of White Ibises
Notice how our beaks our curved
When we are born, they are straight
For the first 14 days,
Then they curve, it has been observed.

Sources: Cornell Lab All About Birds - White Ibis

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Friday, January 25, 2019

January 25, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, T.M. Goodwin WMA

I am a Cattle Egret
I'm not breeding so I'm white with no orange
Oh no, now I have to think of a rhyme for that.
Till then I'll put this poem in storage.

Sources: Audubon guide to North American Birds - Cattle Egret

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Thursday, January 24, 2019

January 24, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, Goodwin WMA

I am a Roseate Spoonbill
It's breeding time of year again
Dee will take hundreds of pictures of me,
On that you can depend.

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

January 23, 2019

Location: Fellmere, T.M. Goodwin WMA

I am a Cattle Egret
On an island with a few of my friends.
Including a Roseate Spoonbill
And some Anhingas on the left end.

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

January 22, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I am a Rainbow scarab
I'm a type of Dung Beetle
I am quite pretty, despite my name
And was worshipped by Egyptian people.

Sources: Featured Creatures - Rainbow Scarab

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Monday, January 21, 2019

January 21, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I am known as a Merlin
I'm kind of short and stocky
And I don't have prominent stripes on my tail
So don't confuse me with a Red-shouldered Hawkie.

(Ok, that's a terrible rhyme, but someone complained about me rhyming "US" with "climates" yesterday, so I thought I would really give them something to complain about today ;-)

Sources: Cornel Lab  All About Birds - Merlin

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Sunday, January 20, 2019

January 20, 2019

Location: Sebastian, Trans Florida Rails to Trails

I'm an Nine-banded Armadillo
I'm the only Armadillo found in the US
I can stay underwater for up to 6 minutes
And prefer warm and wet climates.

Sources: National Wildlife Federation - Nine-banded Armadillo

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Saturday, January 19, 2019

January 19, 2019

Location: Micco, Wheeler Stormwater Treatment Area

I am known as Red-shouldered Hawk
You can identify me when I fly
By the stripes on my tail, and the reddish bars on my chest,
Any my wingtips are edged in white.

(You will have to click on the photo to enlarge it to see the white, but it's there. Or, to see it even better, click on the link below to see a closer flight shot.)

Sources: Cornell Lab All About Birds - Red-shouldered Hawk

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Friday, January 18, 2019

January 18, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I'm known as a Red-shouldered Hawk
Sitting here looking pensive.
Although my hooked bill and big talons
Make smaller critters quite apprehensive.

Sources: Cornell Lab All About Birds - Red-shouldered Hawk 

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Thursday, January 17, 2019

January 17, 2019

Location: Micco, Wheeler Stormwater Treatment Area

We are Greater Yellowlegs
We hang out in ponds, marshes and streams
Our call has three notes, Lesser Yellowlegs has two,
And we have knobbier knees.

Sources: Audubon Guide to North American Birds - Greater Yellowlegs
Personal interview - David Simpson

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

January 16, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, my house

I am a Hydriris ornatalis
I can be found in 5 of the 7 continents.
I don't live in Antartica, and in the Americas
Florida's the only place that I am prominent.

Sources:
Bugguide
Bold Systems

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

January 15, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I'm a Downy Woodpecker
I'm the smallest woodpecker in the southeast.
But that is to my advantage,
I can eat bugs bigger woodpeckers can't reach.

Sources: Cornel Lab - All About Birds - Downy Woodpecker

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Monday, January 14, 2019

January 14, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park

I known as a Palm Warbler
I have a yellow chin and eyebrow
There's also a little yellow on my backside,
But don't go calling me Yellow-rump now!

Sources: Cornell Lab All About Birds - Palm Warbler

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Sunday, January 13, 2019

January 13, 2019

Location: Fellsmere, Myhouse

I am a Morning-glory Plume Moth
Known as Emmelina monodactyla commonly.
My wings are split, but this can be hard to see
Cause when I sit, they are rolled up tightly.

(Thanks to Bugguide.net for the ID confirmation.)

Sources: UK Moths: Common Plume Emmelina monodactyla

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Saturday, January 12, 2019

January 12, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a Soft-shelled Turtle
I'm in the Trionychidae family
We all have 3 claws on our large front webbed feet.
My handshake is pointy yet clammy, uncannily.

(Click to enlarge this one too - check out the claws on those otherwise innocent looking hands!)

Sources: Encyclopedia.com - Softshell Turtles: Trionychidae

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Friday, January 11, 2019

January 11, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a Soft-shelled Turtle
I'm carnivorous but I don't have teeth.
I can, quite handily, hunt waterfowl and fish,
Using my sharp, pointy beak.

(Make sure you click to enlarge this one - I've take a few pictures of  Soft-shelled turtles over the years and this is the first time I noticed that they don't have teeth!)

Sources: UCSB Science Line: Do turtles have teeth?

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Thursday, January 10, 2019

January 10, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a Great Blue Heron
I live quietly in marshes and ponds.
Put a camera inside my house though,
And you will find I'm an attention hog!

Sources: Audubon News: Camera Trap Captures Strange, Long-legged, Pointy-beaked Panther

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

January 9, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a Snowy Egret
You can tell by my foot and leg.
My other leg and foot are gone right now,
If I don't find them I'll get me a peg!

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

January 8, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a female Boat-tailed Grackle
My mate thinks he is quite the ringer.
But DNA shows he's not always the dad,
We belong on Jerry Springer!

Sources: Cornell Lab - All About Birds - Boat Tailed Grackle

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Monday, January 7, 2019

January 7, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I'm a male Boat-tailed Grackle
I like to practice polygyny.
I have many females who I get down with
And in theory, many progeny.

Sources: Cornell Lab - All About Birds - Boat Tailed Grackle

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Sunday, January 6, 2019

January 6, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am a Tricolored Heron with an Alligator,
We're living side by side in peace.
I'm unafraid, at least for now,
Until the Alligator decides he's hungry!

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Saturday, January 5, 2019

January 5, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

We are Common Gallinules
In the water, we swim like ducks.
But we don't have webbed feet like they do,
And our call is a whinnying "cluck".

Sources: Cornell Lab - All About Birds - Common Gallinule

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Friday, January 4, 2019

January 4, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I am known as an Anhinga
My feathers aren't waterproof and I have dense bones.
This helps me submerge slowly when I hunt,
For fish, crustaceans and toads.

Sources: Cornell Labs - All About Birds - Anhinga

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Thursday, January 3, 2019

January 3, 2019

Location: Viera Wetlands

I'm an adult Purple Gallinule,
I'm an amazingly good and strong flier.
I live in Florida, but I can fly out of my range
If my food situation is dire.

Sources: Cornell Lab - All About Birds - Purple Gallinule

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

January 2, 2019

Location: Vero Beach Wetlands

I am known as a Wood Stork
In flight you might mistake me for an Ibis.
But I have a black head and more black on my wings,
The Ibis just has black on his wing tips.

Sources: Cornell Lab - All About Birds - Compare Wood Stork and White Ibis

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

January 1, 2019

Location: Vero Beach Wetlands

On the left is a Great Egret, on the right a Tricolor,
They appear to both be the same size.
But the Tricolor is in water to his ankles,
And the Great Egret is up to his thighs.

(This picture illustrates the concept that often binoculars, or in this case a camera lens,  can distort the size of a bird. I know that Great Egrets are larger than Tricolored Herons, but it wasn't till I looked closely that I could see why they appearer to be the same size.)

Photo and text © 2018 Dee Fairbanks Simpson