It’s Like Having a Private Zoo!

A New Reality

Monday, August 31, 2020

 

Have you noticed, when you stay home A LOT (like during a pandemic), you focus on so much more than normal?  You see the clutter accumulating in the house, you spot areas in your home just begging for a good dusting or heavy-duty mopping.  I bet you have already cleaned out a closet or reorganized a cupboard or two!  Some folks have remodeled.   Others have re-landscaped.  Or perhaps, you’ve taken some time to just stare out the windows and watch the world go by.

I may have mentioned, in our house, we moved a table into the family room to accommodate jig-saw puzzling.  This table also provides an opportunity to view the lake, the wild-life, and the world outside.

Our view from the puzzle table.
Our view from the puzzle table.

And that is the subject of this blog post:  today, we are your guides as we view the fauna of Florida.  May we introduce you to the RovingRaconteurs private, spontaneous, impromptu, ever-changing, cage-free, and fascinating zoo?

Alligators, Otters, Turtles:

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We have a resident alligator in our lake. Almost any body of water in Florida will have an alligator.
He'll often come ashore to enjoy the sun.
He’ll often come ashore to enjoy the sun.
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Sometimes, we can see two alligators. We assume this happens during mating season.
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Don’t think two males would tolerate sharing the territory. So these must be mates.
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Rarely, but with great excitement, we can spot the river otters as they frolic in our lake.
Sometimes, they come ashore to enjoy the sun.
Sometimes, they come ashore to enjoy the sun.
But they never stay very long.
But they never stay very long.
Often, we'll see the turtles lined up along the shore to take the sun.
Often, we’ll see the turtles lined up along the shore to take the sun.

Birds:

Limpkin
Limpkin
A night heron in the rain.
A night heron in the rain.
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For some reason, these Cattle Egrets are sitting in the trees. This is an unusual sight. Normally, they stroll along the shoreline pecking at worms and other tasty tidbits.
Pelicans and Cormorants
Pelicans and Cormorants
Herons will obviously sit in the trees, also!
Blue Herons will obviously sit in the trees, also!
Ahh, the swans are always a beautiful and graceful sight.
Ahh, the swans are always a beautiful and graceful sight.
Mom and her babies (cygnets). These are Mute Swans.
Mom and her babies (cygnets). These are Mute Swans.
And, of course, the ducks.
And, of course, the ducks.
And our favorites--the Sandhill Cranes.
And our favorites–the Sandhill Cranes.

The Sandhill Cranes are the most frequent visitors to our backyard.  Not long ago, we posted a blog about them and the thrill of watching the parents teaching the colts to fly.  (Check out the archives above and look for “Sandhill Crane Flight School.” posted in May 2020.)

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When it’s time to teach the colts to fly, both parents are involved in the training.
Wow, just look at that wingspan!!!
Wow, just look at that wingspan!!!
Practicing take-off and landing skills.
Practicing take-off and landing skills.

Bobcat, Opossum, Fox:

Only once did we spot a opossum in the tree.
Only once did we spot a opossum in the tree.
But a fox will wander through now and then.
But a fox will wander through now and then.
And then, there's the bobcat.
And then, there’s the bobcat.

 

Ahh, now we’ve reached the inspiration for this blog.  Last week, we noticed two new residents in the live oak behind our house.  Two Florida squirrels had moved in.  We could watch them play and frolic as they chased each other around the tree and across the lawn.  We named them Fred and Ethel.  They’re cute!  But then…..the bobcat noticed them, too!!!  Oh dear, oh dear.

Here’s the bobcat hunting:

The bobcat spots a squirrel.
The bobcat spots a squirrel.
The chase is on.
The chase is on.
And up he goes.
And up he goes.
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But the squirrel is elusive. Do you see Fred on the left side of the tree trunk?
Too late. The bobcat missed.
Too late. The bobcat missed.
The bobcat loses sight of the the squirrel.
The bobcat loses sight of the the squirrel.
Love this photo!!!
Love this photo!!!
The bobcat gives up.
The bobcat gives up.
And heads off to find other prey.
And heads off to find other prey.

 

The squirrels outfoxed the bobcat and we’ll continue to enjoy their antics as well as the parade of critters who come through the yard.  But truth be told, we are really missing those silly towel animals aboard the cruise ships.

I bet they miss us, too!!!
I bet they miss us, too!!!
Oh how we look forward to those carefree, sunny days on the Lido Deck!
Oh how we look forward to those carefree, sunny days on the Lido Deck!
Or hanging out with friends!
Or hanging out with friends!

 

We are so ready to cruise again!!!  At least, we can still have fun researching, planning, and dreaming of new and exotic destinations!  We are looking forward to more travels and adventures.  Hopefully sometime soon!!

When the time comes, we hope you’ll join us and follow the journey!!!

3 thoughts on “It’s Like Having a Private Zoo!”

    1. Thank you, we are very lucky!!! The bobcat photos must be of the male; yesterday, we saw the female, WITH HER 3 CUBS, walk past the window. We fell all over ourselves trying to get to the camera. Sadly, we failed to get a decent photo. We’ll hope for another sighting!!!

      Liked by 1 person

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