I was sitting in the family room on Friday afternoon when Lynn came in, saw these birds behind our house, and asked me what they were. If she hadn’t asked, I never would have noticed them. Maybe my chair should face the window instead of the TV?
I quickly grabbed my camera and took a few shots through the window and screen and then went out on the other side of the house to get this unobstructed view. I’m glad my birding lens was still mounted!
Black-bellied whistling duck family. There’s another adult and one more juvenile out of the frame to the right.
Black-bellied Whistling Ducks are common here in Central Florida year round, although I’ve never seen them in our neighborhood before. They were previously known as the “Black-bellied Tree Duck” since they’re often found roosting and nesting in trees. They’re monogamous, which is unusual in ducks. Also unusual is their high-pitched whistling call which you’ll remember the first time you hear it.
After adding a few minutes of excitement to our afternoon, this family strolled on down the street and disappeared. I was glad they stopped by – maybe we’ll spot them again.
Thanks Lynn for asking about them and thanks to all of you for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!
I usually walk in my neighborhood several times a week. It’s a good way to get some exercise and say hello to folks. I did something different last Friday and drove over to Orlando Wetlands Park for my morning hike.
It was still dark when I arrived and I could hear owls and whistling ducks calling on the way out to Lake Searcy – one of my favorite landscape places. I didn’t like the view this time since the water was low and the appealing mirror like reflections were missing. I ended up moving to a new location for this:
Middle marsh mystery island
Morning color was disappointing, but I do like the image. After sunrise, I wandered around and made some bird photos. There were many Little Blue Herons:
Pretty little blue
And the Palm Warblers are here in force, bobbing their tails as they pose in the reeds:
And here’s one of the whistling ducks. I caught it mid-preen:
We’ve had fantastic weather here in Central Florida this week – perfect for a photo outing. When Kevin K. invited me to go back to Viera Wetlands yesterday with Frank B., I readily agreed. There’s a lot to see with many baby birds about and even reports of a King Rail family. There are also a great many Black-bellied Whistling Ducks.
They’re unusual ducks. Their appearance is distinctive and instead of quacking, they do have a whistle like call. I usually see most ducks paddling around in the water. Black-bellied Whistling Ducks are sometimes in the water, but you’re much more likely to see these perched in trees.
I managed to catch this sequence yesterday. One bird was minding its own business on a dead palm tree and another wanted to join or replace it. These four photos capture what happened. The bird on the tree was not interested in sharing!
Duck dispute – 1 of 4. “Hey what do you think you’re doing?”
Duck dispute – 2 of 4. “You can’t land here!”
Duck dispute – 3 of 4. “I said back off, buddy!”
Duck dispute – 4 of 4. “OK, that does it – GET LOST!”
This same kind of thing happened more than once on different trees, with different ducks. Fun to watch!
Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!