Sunday, February 28, 2016

Florida Report: Boat Ride in the Everglades

Based on the photos I took last week, I can break the trip report into two halves: the boat tour, and everything else. So here is the boat tour!

This is out of the National Park at Everglades City, and as the guide pointed out, it's the third-largest national park in the lower 48 states (behind Death Valley and Yellowstone). We've done the tour a number of times since my parents moved to Florida (20 years ago this fall!), and a lot of the pictures are similar from one year to the next (here's 2013 and 2015, for example), but I'll share them anyway; my blog, my party.

Osprey on manatee zone sign:
And another, with a much bigger nest.
These guys all seem to be looking the same way:
But I think that was a coincidence. Terns are the weathervane birds, not cormorants.
A little further out, as often happens, we encountered some dolphins. They swam around and under the boat, and when the captain moved faster, one of them followed to swim in the wake. Really, really close, as it happens.. I got a few pictures like this:
Before I got this one:
So that was fun. And it was a beautiful day.
We weren't on the sunset ride, but it was late enough that birds were filling their spot, what there was of it as the tide was quite high.
Which is clearer the closer we got.
Unusually (in our experience), the majority were white pelicans, which are not the ones that are in Florida year-round.
It seems so funny that they all cram onto this spot. It's not like it's the only sandy ground in the everglades.
But I guess if the cool kids start going there, everyone wants to be there.
I love this one guy standing on the driftwood.
We moved on from there at last, and noticed this bare tree that was also pretty popular.
Not a bird on the tree with leaves, as far as I can see.

I asked about this, by the way, and apparently it isn't something that is used when a shark is encountered.
Apparently the name or type of the boat is a Shark, and they are required to carry this, which is a locator beacon or something, even though they aren't out after dark. Good to know, I guess.

And that's the boat ride!

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