Wednesday, December 14, 2016

12/14 Ortona South Lock & Dam Campground

This is one of the nicest and cheapest campgrounds in Florida!  It's about a mile from the highway, so it is quiet, other than the noise of the water going over the dam and boats coming up and down the river.  I have been extremely busy finishing up this semester with my online students, but I finally turned in grades last night, so I had some time to go out and take some photos. 

First, here is my campsite--nicely paved, level, and nice gravel patio with a good view of the river and the dam.  There is even some greenery for privacy between some of the sites.

You can see how the line of RVs is close to the river. 
This is down just on the other side of the dam at the fishing pier.  The lock is on the other side of the river, so boats are not supposed to come here. 
There is a creek that enters the main river from the farm areas.  It must have fish in it because there were a lot of birds hanging around.

A little blue heron likes to hang around here.

And this snowy egret has been standing in the exact same place for the three days that I walked down here over the past week!  Guess he owns this spot.  You can tell a snowy egret from the other white birds because it has black legs and a black bill.  A few years ago, I came extremely close to hitting a small flock of these with my motorhome, as they took off and flew within a very few feet of my windshield.  I remember seeing nothing but white and black, so I always remember these birds! 

This is an anhinga. 

There is a handicap-accessible fishing pier right at the entrance to this little creek. 


This little otter was very elusive, but I caught him a couple of times.  Here he is eating either a snake or a lizard of some sort.  He lives in the same little creek about 25 feet away from the creek mouth and very close to a boardwalk over the creek.  

See the snake or whatever in his mouth?

Check out this video that gives a better close-up of him or her eating:

I used my telephoto lens to take a picture of this Florida soft-shelled turtle on the opposite bank.  Check out his nose!  It looks like a snorkel, and that is exactly what it is used for!  His shell is very flat and streamlined for living most of the time in water. 

There were some other turtles sunning themselves, but might be common cooter turtles. This first one was floating in very clear water.

Now, this bird is a real puzzle. I suspect it is a juvenile because of its coloring, but I cannot figure out what it is a juvenile of!  Maybe a little blue heron???  Or tri-colored heron?

Correction: The bird experts have spoken and told me this is a limpkin!
There were a whole little flock of these mystery birds.  I think it might be a juvenile heron, but the bird books tend to just list adult coloring.  The key is the bill shape and the fact that legs are dark.  Hmmmm. 

Tomorrow morning I am off to another state park near Sarasota, FL, so I am looking forward to that.  I might stop and check out the otter before I leave, however! 

1 comment:

  1. Judy, your brown bird is a Limpkin! Pretty much a FL bird!