We are very lucky to be living on the edge of the Everglades on a lake that attracts a stream of wildlife visitors. These captures are all from either my backyard or the immediate neighborhood,which I define as within bicycle distance.

An unlucky young alligator became prey for a larger ‘gator right in front of me. I had noticed some neighbors looking into the lake and, assuming they saw a ‘gator, I grabbed my camera. As I stepped into the backyard, I startled the smaller ‘gator that I had not noticed and he scrambled into the lake. Unfortunately, this attracted the attention of the big one and he seized his opportunity. Yes, all my fault and I did feel badly about it. Nature is remorseless but not cruel. As I learned, if an alligator’s normal food supply is limited they will eat smaller alligators. It’s a matter of survival.

Birds of a seemingly endless variety inhabit this area, some of which truly are odd and others simply beautiful. Actually, I think even the odd ones are beautiful in their own way.

We had a Bald Eagle couple in the neighborhood for the Fall through early winter, then they moved on. At one point, a third eagle moved in resulting in a furious aerial battle!

Our little lake has enough fish to inspire Least Terns and Osprey to fish. I love to watch both. The Terns dart around at high speed before making their completely vertical dive. The Osprey hover, move, hover some more, until they spot a fish below the surface and begin their sharp dive. I’ve captured Osprey with fish before, but not in our lake as yet.

Dive Bomber!

Shake it off!

Turtles, snakes (I’ve only seen one of those so far) and, of course, gators are all part of the ‘hood.

Birds! Lots of different birds visit my backyard…Great Blue Heron,Tri-Colored Heron, Black-Crowned Heron,White Ibis,Great Egret, Cattle Egret,Anhinga,Wood Stork Least Tern,Osprey, Crow,Pileated Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker,Bald Eagles,Night Heron, Red-Shouldered Hawk, and many more have paid a visit. It’s a seemingly endless parade.

The fun doesn’t stop with wild animals. We also have a neighborhood cattle ranch!

Swallow-tailed Kite. April 7, 2019 First I’ve ever seen. These birds eat on the wing, in this case what appeared to be a baby bird snatched from a nest. Nature is remorseless but never cruel.