Thursday, June 28, 2007
ON THE HOMOSASSA RIVER
Went to the Homosassa River today. A friend of a friend of a friend lives on it, and let me launch my kayak at his dock, the first house next to the Wildlife Park, so I was able to put in right where I wanted to be as opposed to paddling three miles from the public ramp.
Began by paddling under the road I had just come in on, and emerging on the other side of that, right outside the Homosassa Springs State Wildlife Park.
This is the bridge which marks the limit of the park waters, and is barred, lest the injured manatees get out, or the wild ones get in. A few hundred feet on the other side is the spring which feeds two million gallons a day to the river.
Looking down-river, where ten miles or so further on one enters the Gulf Of Mexico!
I spotted a pair of turtles on a log, sunning themsleves. One lept clear as I approached but the other one stayed put, though ready. I kept my distance and moved gently so as to be minimally intrusive. I wanted the shot! Scaring him away would not do either of us any good!
Across the river another sighting.
Now the bird in the picture below- that is the closest I have ever gotten in the wild. He was doing two things- hiding from me (yes, really!) and hunting a big water bug! He chickened out just after that shot and flew off. I think he suddenly realized how exposed he was to me and was a bit shocked! He had moved into that position under some twigs and bush and was watching me the whole time, apparently feeling confident in his cover. He lost sight of the fact that he had lost that cover when he emerged intent on the bug, and then suddenly remembered me and BAMM he was gone!