Roseate Spoonbills

Pelican Island NWR
Our family place in Sabastian, Florida is right across the Indian River lagoon from the Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge – the first in the nation Refuge designated by President Theodore Roosevelt to protect wildlife, mainly the waterfowl that call this place home.
The refuge is home to herons, egrets, storks, and a wide variety of waterfowl – and among the visitors to Pelican Island are Roseate Spoonbills. These birds, the only spoonbills common in North America, migrate from South America to breed here on our river at Pelican Island. They are found in other spots in Florida as well, but Pelican Island is a favourite breeding ground.
Spoonbills are hard to spot sometimes, as they like to be deep in the mangroves, so when Norma and I were walking the trail at Pelican island this past week, we had to look carefully and take small detours along the edges to be able to spot the birds we saw fly in. This group was happily feeding in a mangrove swamp, which made photography a challenge as I had to use manual focus and their constant movement made it very interesting. In the end I got this week’s image, and we both were thrilled to see these amazing birds.
People like President Roosevelt had the foresight to preserve these special spaces to ensure the survival of these beautiful animals.