Four weeks in Florida. One week to get acclimatised, enjoy the sun and pool plus unwind after the awful weather in both Spain and the UK and then it was off to Daytona Beach. But first, what to see and where to go?
Two special votes of thanks here. First to friend Andy Paterson from just down the coast in Torremolinos who very kindly loaned me his copy of the "National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America" - a marvellous tool as it very much looked as if I would be taking digital photographs first then using the Guide to help identify the individual birds.
Secondly, making us of that wonderful facility known as "Birdingpal" (I give my services here in the Axarquia area of the Cost del Sol) I contacted a certain Gallus Quigley in Florida and he very kindly emailed me back with a list of recommended sites based on both Orlando and Fort Lauderdale. And how right he was!
Follow the link on the right to see a selection of PHOTOGRAPHS:
Our first visit was to the Emerald Marsh reserve - "The Jewel of Lake County". Other than egrets and herons not a lot to be seen. However, we did get our first of many sightings of the Red-rumped Woodpecker.
Which brings me on to some generalisations. Other than where a reserve had feeders hanging up to attract birds, there was a marked lark of LBJs. Certainly, we saw a good range of woodpeckers and sapsuckers and eventually managed to identify most of the smaller birds. Grackles , yes and even Northern Mockingbirds but no real numbers of either warblers or thrush-like birds. Speaking to local Americans at the various sites, we were most definitely given the impression that that was indeed the feeling of the locals. All sorts of reasons forth-coming; not simply a matter of a change between the seasons and late Spring arrivals.
Of the birds that we did see, the Bald Eagle was a most impressive creature; magnificent and moody and beautiful to watch as it glided over the clear blue skies. However, for sheer beauty, I would have to select the Swallow Kite which out in an appearance during the last three days of our stay. This really is a bird to behold and saliva over!
On the water, the Wood Duck was very pretty and the Green Heron had a special place in my sightings. The American Purple Gallinule, when finally tracked down, was rather a disappointment. Much smaller than our Purple Swamphen, smaller even than the Common Moorhen, and very dull without the striking red of our European bird. Indeed, we were informed that there is presently a cull on to rid the country of many of the introduced species, including the Swamphen.
The ugliest bird? You would think either the Black or Turkey Vulture with their bald heads and dull colours but, no, my "ugliest bird" was most definitely the Word Stork. Forget the body feathering, the beak is horrendous and makes one glad that I am not a male of the species looking for a mate!
Returning to the above Turkey Vulture, this had to be the most common bird and there was not a day went by without us seeing at least twenty of these birds making lazy circles in the sky. (Sounds like a cue to sing something from "Oklahoma" - which was often the case after seeing the birds up above.) It is the Turkey Vulture that has the tremendous sense of smell to identify carrion whereas the Black Vulture, often seen in much smaller numbers accompanying the former, evidently relies more upon sight and is happy for the Turkey branch of the family to do all the hard work.
The Daytona Beach Area:
Back to our visits. Having completed the first visit whilst staying in Orlando, we set off for our next stop which was to be three nights in Daytona Beach. The route led us directly to the Blue Spring State Park, Florida's premiere Manatee refuge which was home to many of the animals and their young as they sought warmer waters to spend the Winter. Not only good views of the Manatee but also some good-sized alligators, always useful for reminding you not to wander into the water! Again, lots of Woodpeckers plus Great Cormorants and Great Blue Herons. A couple of Ring-billed Gulls that promised better things to come.
Once in the Daytona Beach area we settled into our hotel in Ormond Beach. Here, the public library was very supportive in searching out local birding haunts and came up with, and printed off for us, a copy of the "Greater Daytona Bird Watching Guide". This small leaflet offered fourteen (14) suggested sites and I think we must have visited most.
Lighthouse Point Park, Ponce Inlet provided plenty of Brown Pelicans.
Ormond Beach provided loads of gulls, terns and waders which could be observed and photographed from the car on the beach. Superb views of Royal and Sandwich Terns plus Ring-billed, Bonaparte's and Laughing Gulls, later joined by Herring Gulls. The common waders were Sanderling and Ruddy Turnstone.
Ormond Beach's Tomoka-Bulow State Park, Central Park and Sanchez Park all provided chances to see a range of woodpeckers, mainly Red-bellied, but were more conspicuous by the lack of small birds.
Whilst the other sites were visited, very little additional species, if any, were added.
The final site we called in upon, before setting off for Smyrna (see below) was the Spruce Creek Park, Port Orange. Here a lot of work had been undertaken by local schools to improve and manage he site. Walking to the far end and climbing the installed wooden "observation tower", the binoculars picked up a resting Bald Eagle. Being a good two or three hundred yards away the bird was undisturbed and remained at rest the whole time so plenty of time to take many photographs and hope that they would safely enlarge upon return to the UK.
Whilst in the area, we had travelled a little to the north to visit both the Washington Oaks State Gardens, Palm Coast and Fort Mantanzas. Again, most of the egrets, herons and gulls, not to mention accompanying vultures, were seen at both. However, the latter site was unique in that a free boat ride was provided to take you across the waterway to the recently restored fort. Here we with given a guided tour and introduction, the guide dressed in period costume, of the fort's history. As well as a Brown Pelican flying by, Ospreys and more Great Egrets, the return crossing presented a close view of a Northern Harrier, which was an added bonus.
Finally, as we departed the area on our way down to Merritt Island and the Kennedy Space Centre, we called in at the Smyrna Dunes Park. Whilst the weather was damp, we were well under way before the light drizzle turned to the real stuff but still we completed the 1½ mile board walk. Specially interesting was to see the burrows and finally a couple of the large Ground Turtles. More gulls and Royal Terns on the shore and some sparrows but, as yet, unable to identify.
Merritt Island - 19 February
We finally arrived at the Welcome Centre at about 2 pm as the heavy rain (and to be the only rain of the whole four weeks that we were away) stopped. On entering the building the wardens were very helpful and able to produce (for free) all manner of leaflets and maps plus bird check lists. This latter was a great help in identifying the birds that we were to eventually see.
A, relatively, quick look round the immediate grounds provided a nesting pair of Ospreys (the whole area of Merritt Island is a mecca for Ospreys), Northern Cardinals, Mourning Doves and a saturated Black Vulture sat on the roof drying to dry out his feathers. On the small island, not five metres away, a weary alligator slept the time away. At least, I am assuming he was resting but there was no chance of me going over to make closer enquiries. As they say, unless you can run at at least 40 mph for a good hundred yards or more then you are going to be in serious trouble. The warden also informed us that there are two rules regarding humans an alligators:
1. No petting; and if you break this law then almost certainly you will break the second law
2. No feeding !
Black Point Wildlife Drive
Now it was time to head back to the car and drive less than a mile to the start of this impressive drive through protected, swampy land full of shallow ponds. No sooner had we turned into the drive and we wee met by a small pond, no more than three metre across. The pond was full of wading birds including Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Roseate Spoonbill, Great Blue Heron and Little Blue Heron. Incredible.
As we drove on round at about 5 mph and making frequent stops (fortunately, this is a one-way road system!) every lagoon seemed to be a mass of egrets and herons, mainly the above plus Tri-color. More Vultures overhead, mainly Turkey Vultures, and distant hawks such as Red-shouldered and Northern Harrier. The deeper pools contained an assortment of ducks; mainly Blue-winged Teal but a few Mallard and Northern Shoveler. The common grebe was the Pied-billed Grebe and amongst the waders were American Oystercatcher, Greater Yellowlegs and Willet. However, perhaps the best sighting was that of a very close Killdeer.
Larger birds seen at the site included Brown Pelican and both cormorants, the Double-crested Cormorant (but no sign of a crest, looked just like our Cormorant) and the Anhinga. Later pools also produced many White and Glossy Ibis plus the ugliest bird that we saw in our whole stay, the Wood Stork. Not to be outdone, there also hundreds of American Coots (no different from a Spanish winter visit!) and Common Moorhen. Towards the end of the drive, we were able to see the nest and occupant of America's national bird, the Bald Eagle.
By now we were beginning to get to grips with the identification of some of the smaller birds, including both American and Fish Crow, Belted Kingfisher, American Robin, Northern Waterthrush, the very common Boat-tailed Grackle and even a Savannah Sparrow. Only just visible in the waterside vegetation was a Green-backed Heron but, later on our stay, we were to get a very close look at the Viera Wetlands. We even saw some of the first Tree Swallows to arrive back from their southern winter quarters and, finally, as we left a sight of the comparatively rare Florida Scrub Jay. What helped us here was our familiarity with seeing Azure-winged Magpies in this part of Spain, the colouring being so familiar. And a Great Horned Owl outside the hotel to welcome us home at the end of the day!
Bird list for Merritt Island:
Pied-billed Grebe, Brown Pelican, Double-crested Cormorant, Anhinga, Green-backed heron, Little Blue Heron, Cattle Egret, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Tr--colored Heron,Wood Stork, Glossy Ibis, White Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Mallard, Blue-winged Real, Northern Shoveler,Hooded Merganser, Turkey Vulture, Black Vulture, Red-shouldered Hawk, Bald eagle, Northern Harrier, Osprey, Common Moorhen, American Coot, American Oystercatcher, Killdeer, Ruddy Turnstone, Greater Yellowlegs, Sanderling, Herring Gull, Ring-billed Gull, Laughing Gull, Bonaparte's Gull, Least Tern, Royal Tern, Sandwich Tern, Mourning Dove, Great Horned Owl; Belted Kingfisher, Tree Swallow, Florida Scrub Jay, Fish Crow, Northern Mockingbird, American Robin, Northern Waterthrush, Red-winged Blackbird, Boat-tailed Grackle, Northern Cardinal, Savannah Sparrow and Starling
Lake Okeechobee - 25 February
The journey from Fort Lauderdale back to Orlando had meant to take in a stay near Lake Okeechobee but, given that we had the opportunity to pay a second, free, visit to the Kennedy Space Centre if we could return within the week, we decided to press on back to the Merritt Island area. This would mean that we could visit the Space Centre in the morning and then have another look at the bird reserve just up the road and a second outing along Black Point Wildlife Drive.
Half way along the lake's eastern side we made a stop at Canal Point to climb over the raised bank and actually look at the lake. What an impressive sight. It was just like looking out to sea, even better than looking across the Channel from the Dover area as there was no sign of the distant shores. No wonder the Okeechobee is the second largest fresh-water lake in the United States.
Walking down to the edge we could see a flock of gulls and terns resting on one of the pontoons. Looking closer, they were not black-winged terns, rather a small flock of Black Skimmers.
Following the excitement of our first sight of these graceful birds it was back in the car, summon up the usual company of Turkey Vultures overhead, see the occasional Red-shouldered Hawk and a few lurking/resting alligators and off to the Melbourne area to find overnight accommodation for a couple of days.
Merritt Island and Black Point Drive - 26 February
A reasonably early start saw us at the Space Centre to finish the tour started last week and lots more White Ibis and alligators about. Indeed, we had Roseate Spoonbills and Bald Eagle plus many views of Ospreys.
Moving on to Black Point Wildlife Drive, we could not believe the change in one week. Gone was much of the water and many of the lagoons were dry, if somewhat damp to the eye. Hence, far fewer ducks, egrets and herons and that many waders. Lovely to see another pair of Killdeer and a small flock of Willet.
Viera Wetlands - 27 February
Leaving straight after an early breakfast, the final leg of our return journey to Orlando was to first take us twelve miles up the freeway to the Viera Wetlands. The wetlands were created to take "grey water" from the local communities and then clean before releasing the excess to the holding pens before drainage. Built as a series of lagoons with tarmacked roads (mainly one-way system) on the raised banks, the whole area is a mass of birds at close quarters and a perfect bird-watching experience, for both beginners and those with more experience and/or expertise. Indeed, I would say that this was in many ways the best site we visited during the whole of our stay in Florida - yet, seemingly, comparatively unknown by birders visiting from outside the State.
Just as we reached the entrance to the water treatment area, the road running parallel to a small water course, we came across a small flock of Blue-winged Teal and a solitary Great Egret. A Northern Mockingbird was patiently waiting for us on the fence just inside the gate and it was then on to the first lagoon and the start of the one-way system. Stopping in view of the water we spoke to another birder with his scope focused on a pine tree to the left at the rear of the water. Would you believe it, another "Bob"! It seemed as if every birder we met in Florida was named "Bob". Another coincidence, this Bob was driving over to Merritt Island in two days time (Sunday) to have a guided tour of the area by Gallus Quigley, the very "Birdingpal" who had emailed me the local information about Orlando and greater area.
Back to the scope. Confirming with my binoculars, though I did also check out the scope, we could both identify a pair of resting Crested Caracaras. These birds were to be seen throughout most of the morning as they moved about the wetlands. We had hardly had chance to look at the Great Egrets, a Belted Kingfisher and a couple of Anhingas when we were joined by a local birder who informed us thathe had found a Limkin close to the road and easily seen at the edge of the reeds. So, off we both set in our respective cars to the identified spot. yes, good views of the Limkin and a secons bird not so far away. We thought that, perhaps, this was to be our special privilege but were to be corrected a couple of days later when we visited the Three Lakes site.
Continuing on there was a wide range of water-based birds to be seen plus a good view of a male Red-bellied Woodpecker and a pair of Sandhill Cranes. Fish Crows, a small group of Hooded Meganser, over-flying Bald Eagles, a Red-shouldered Hawk and Ospreys and, for me, two very special surprises. First a very close view of a Green-backed Heron offering a good photographic opportunity and then an American Bittern. Wonderful! And this is not forgetting another Killdeer a fast-flying Merlin heading for the low bushes as we arrived and a Common Ground Dove.
Birds seen at the Viera Wetlands:
Double-crested Cormorant, Anhinga, American Bittern, Great Blue heron,Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Little-blue Heron, Tric-colored Heron, cattle Egret, Green-backed Heron, White Ibis, Glossy Ibis,Roseate Spoonbill, Wood Stork, Blue-winged Teal, Ring-necked Duck, Hooded Merganser, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Bald Eagle, Northern Harrier, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-tailed hawk, Crested caracara, American Kestrel, Merlin, Common Moorhen, American Coot, Limpkin, Sandhill Crane, Killdeer, Mourning Dove, Common Ground Dove, Belted Kingfisher, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Fish Crow, Tree Swallow, Northern Mockingbird, Palm Warbler, Red-winged Blackbird and Boat-tailed Grackle.
Prairie Lakes Unit, Three Lakes, Osceola - 28 February
Safely ensconced in our Kissimmee hotel, it was off to the Three lakes on Saturday morning. What looked like a short journey turned out to be nearer thirty miles!
As with our visit to the Viera Wetlands, we had hardly entered the site when we met up with a group of three local birders out seeking their first Swallow-tailed Kite of the year. Names? Yes, you've guessed; two Bobs and an Alan. How many "Bob the Birder" must there be out there?
Having all joined up together we proceeded to Boat Ramp Road overlooking Lake Jackson. On the way we had two good sightings of Red-shouldered Hawk before reaching the water. A typical Everglades watery swamp with alligators taking their rest at various spots and good numbers of herons and egrets. Closer inspection not only uncovered a Limpkin but suddenly there seemed to Limpkins all over the place. Not to be outdone, we had one individual walking the water's edge in front of us whilst another got on with their breeding ritual to the right.
Overhead a Bald Eagle returning to its nest whilst, higher up, a small flock of about twenty White Pelicans soared and gradually moved off. A possible Snail Kite identified by the locals and then a recognised Northern Harrier. Meanwhile, in the bushes behind us we were entertained to the antics of the feeding Palm and Yellow-rumped Warblers.
Leaving the lake we moved on to the next water and on our way to the shore along a five-mile gravel track (thank goodness, not for the first time, that we had a 4 x 4-type car rather than a normal rental saloon) passing a gorgeous Eastern Meadowlark resting on the fence and a Loggerhead Shrike on the power cable above. A stop at a well-used site for Burrowing Owls was unsuccessful so onto the water to be greeted by a mixed flock of Sandwich Tern, Black Skimmers and Herring Gulls. Yet three more Bald Eagle nests to be looked at, complete with occupants, and Ospreys. Under the trees a group of six Whooping Cranes plus a couple of Sandhill Cranes.
Did I mention Turkey Vultures? If not, not to worry, they were with us every day and in copious numbers!
Tibet-Butler Preserve, Orlando - March
The final nine days werwe spent back in Orlando, not so far from Epcot and within ten minutes, six miles, of the Tibet-Butler Preserve. Needless to say, we/I made at least five morning visits, albeit the last, on our final day, coincided with the park's closure! Not to worry though, on our way to the park even Jenny got a view of the magnificent Swallow-tailed Kite!
As with all the other sites we visited, much care had been taken with the management of the site and we always warmly welcomed and offered any assistance, help or advice that we required. It was here, having noted the marked absence of small birds in general, that we made use of the feeding site next to the entrance. As they say, if you cannot go to the birds then bring the birds to you! At last, an opportunity to start identifying some of the smaller LBJs; Tufted Titmouse, American Goldfinch, Northern Cardinal and Gray Catbird were in good supply but it was also good, at last, to see a Carolina Wren.
The adjacent trees also seemed to be a favourite site for a variety of woodpeckers with regular sightings of Red-bellied and Downy Woodpecker. A "resident" Mourning Dove joined us most days as did a small number of Common Grackles.
However, apart from the daily sightings of Osprey and the Sandhill Crane that had decided to start nesting on the pool at the back of the Preserve, the visits were memorable for four birds: A splendid site of a female Red-shouldered Hawk perching on an exposed branch who was joined by her mate, copulation taking place followed by a five-minute resting period (do birds need a cigarette?) before the pair moved on about the area but still in view for quite a while.
The second raptor was a first sighting of a wild Swallow-tailed Kite. I just happened to look up and there the bird was passing over me. Nobody was going to believe what I had just seen until a second bird appeared and was seen by the warders. The first sighting on the site this year.
The last two birds were ducks and seen on the above-mentioned pool. Although a lot of surface plants, I was easily able to identify Wood Duck and Mottled Duck on following mornings. Indeed, the photographs cropped well to further identify plumage, etc.
This pool also played host to numerous turtles who always seemed to be sun-bathing and, on one morning, at least twenty White Ibis.
Raptor Center, Orlando - 4 March
This was a very interesting morning to the north-west of down town Orlando. A good collection of raptors including owls. It was an opportiunity to take close-up photographs of some of the raptors that we had seen but been unable to photograph n the wild. Thios was especially trus of the Great Horned Owl, Red-tailed Hawk and Crested Caracara. Also present were Ospreys, both turkeys, Peregrine Falcon and a breding pair of Bald Eagles and two further individuals, the male of which was oly able to survive in capivity as a result of a deformedbeak that require, at least, annual trimming for an overshot upper mandible. Also present, a good selection of owls.
In the main house were housed a small collection of American Kestrels and a single Merlin.
Outside again, it was lovely to see a Blue Jay visit the feeding table and from the water's edge to see Brown Pelican, Anhinga, Wood Duck, a passing Wood Stork and wild Osprey flying overhead.
Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area, Christmas - 6 March
The final birding trip during our stay took us along Route 50 back towards the coast to the little (very little!) hamlet of Christmas, probably less than ten miles from Merritt Island. Named Christmas after the arrival of the first settlers, who build a small fort for their protection having arrived in the area on Christmas Day. Christmas Fort became the community of Christmas and, today, some of the original wooden houses have been preserved as an historical attraction.
Two sites either side of the main road and it was to Tosohatchee reserve that we first set out. This is a very large management area and took us at least three hours to drive around. Noted for its Wild Turkeys amongst other birds, we had to make do wit a stuffed version in the management office - on the counter top that was, as opposed to the oven! Again, a wealth of free literature on the site and neighbouring sites to help the visiting birders.
A mixture of driving extremely slowly, stopping and walking revealed a breeding pair of Osprey on or about their nest at the top of an electricity pylon, Eastern Phoebe, most herons and egrets, a close study of a Black Vulture with both vultures overhead, another Red-shouldered Hawk, plus good numbers of American Kestrels and Belted Kingfishers.
Near the water a Killdeer, Fish Crow and many Anhingas whilst in the the woods Red-headed Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker and a single Downy Woodpecker. Of the smaller birds, another Loggerhead Shrike and a Carolina Wren, a Blue-gray Gnatcher and Northern Mockingbirds. Even smaller, good views of both the Yellow-rumped Warbler and a most handsome Common Yellowthroat. Finally, as always, especially when we were near water, numerous views of the Boat-tailed Grackle.
Birds seen at the Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area:
Anhinga, Great Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tricoloured Heron, Cattle Egrat, White Ibis, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Red-shouldered Hawk, American Kestrel, Common Moorhen,Killdeer, Belted Kingfisher, Red-headed Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Eastern Phoebe, Loggerhead Shrike, Fish Crow, Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Wren, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Northern Mockingbird, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Common Yellowthroat and Boat-tailed Grackle.
Orlando Wetlands Park, Christmas - 6 March
This was a similar, but smaller, version of the Viera Wetalnds and created for the same reason, this time the "cleaned" water draining into the nearby St John's river. However, as well as on a smaller scale, for theis site you had to park your car and walk the area; no bad thing.
There seemed to be more extensive reed beds in addtion to the usual vegetation, so the opportunity to see many American Coot, Common Moorhen and, at last, a Purple Gallinule. What a disappointment this Purple Gallinule is; smaller than the Moorhen and by no means as attractinv as our former gallinule in Europe, now named the Purple Swamphen. Also to be seen again, the Pied-billed Grebe and Double-crested Cormorant.
Around the margins, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret and both White Ibis and Glossy Ibis, with good numbers of the latter. On the open water, both Mallard and Blue-winged Teal whilst overhead, as usual, Osprey, Red-shouldered Hawk, American Kestrel and both vultures. The surrounding tres and reeds held a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Red-winged Blackbirds, Northern Cardinals, Eastern Phoebe, Common Yellowthroat and Yellow-bellied Warbler whilst newly-arriving Tree Swallows skimmed over the water busily attacking the midges that kept them fed.
Birds seen at the Orlando Wetland:
Pied-billed Grebe, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, Cattle Egret, White Ibis, Glossy Ibis, Black Vulture, Turkey Vultuire, Mallard, Blue-winged Teal, Osprey, Red-shouldered Hawk, American Kestrel, Purple Gallinule, Common Moorhen, American Coot, Sandhill Crane, Mourning Dove, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Eastern Phoebe, Tree Swallow, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Northern Cardinal, Red-winged Blackbird, Common Grackle and American Goldfinch.
And so mid-afternoon of Monday, 9 March we made our way back to the International Airport to hand back our dark green Jeep Compass and start the weary process of booking-in for the return flight to London Gatwick on board Virgin Atlantic's flight V016. What an awful and uncomfortable flight with awful food that was! Landing in Gatwick and finally retreaving the second case, it was a hurried transfer from the South to North Terminal to catch our Easyjet flight back to Spain, with just ten minutes to spare before the booking gate closed. Considering the latter was a "basic" flight, I have to say that, other than there were no reclining seats, the Easyjet plane was no less comfortable than Virgin's!!!
Subject to further scrutinisation of the photographs and USA Bird Guides, the following is a list of the 92 species seen in Florida:
Pied-billed Grebe, American White Pelican, Brown Pelican, Double-crested Cormorant, Anhinga, American Bittern, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, Snowy Egret, Little Blue Heron, Tricolored Heron, cattle Egret, Green Heron,White Ibis, Glossy Ibis, Roseate Spoonbill, Wood Stork, Wood Duck, Mallard, Mottled Duck, Blue-winged Teal, Northern Shoveler, Ring-necked Duck, Lesser Scaup, Hooded Merganser, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Swallow-tailed Kite, Bald Eagle, Northern Harrier, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Crested Caracara, American Kestrel, Merlin, Purple Gallinule, Common Moorhen, American Coot, Limpkin, Sandhill Crane, Whooping Crane, Killdeer, American Oystercatcher, Greater Yellowlegs, Willet, Ruddy Turnstone, Sanderling, Laughing Gull, Bonaparte's Gull, Ring-billed Gull, Herring Gull, Least Tern, Royal Tern, Sandwich Tern, Black Skimmer, Rock Dove, Mourning Dove, Common Ground Dove, Great Horned Owl, Belted Kingfisher, Red-headed Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Downy Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Eastern Phoebe, Loggerhead Shrike, Blue Jay, Florida Scrub Jay, American Crow, Fish Crow, Tree Swallow, Tufted Titmouse, Carolina Wren, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, American Robin, Gray Catbird, Northern Mockingbird, European Starling, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Palm Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Chipping Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow, Northern Cardinal, Red-winged Blackbird, Eastern Meadowlark, Brewer's Blackbird, Common Grackle, Boat-tailed Grackle, American Goldfinch and House Sparrow.
Perhaps, at this stage, I ought to apologise to our American cousins for using, on the whole, British rather than American spellings.