Not many big birds on my early morning shoot at Savannah National Wildlife Refuge where I met with other members of the Coastal Chapter of the GNPA. Leading our group was Diana Churchill , author of A Birder's Eye View, a compilation of 53 select articles written in a twice monthly column for the Savannah Morning News.
It was a foggy morning at the refuge, but a brilliant sunrise peeked through the moss draped oak trees casting a fiery glow on the dew drenched grass. There were hundreds of songbirds darting from tree to tree feasting on the many insects to fatten up for their fall migration. However, without a very long lens, it was impossible for me to photograph the tiny birds.
Sunrise-Savannah National Wildlife Refuge
In our cars, we began the four mile wildlife drive through the refuge stopping when we spotted any bird activity. My first photo was of the red winged blackbird plentiful in the rice patties feeding on the seeds from the plants. The blackbirds nest in these patties as well as in cattails, rushes and grasses.
Romalea Guttata Grasshopper
Next stop on the wildlife drive, a grasshopper resting on a tall grass. I was hoping to see some long-legged waders such as but with the exception of the Cattle Egret below, they failed to show up.
purple gallinule had Diana not pointed it out to us. There were several swimming and some walking on the lily pads. It is said the purple gallinule swims like a duck and walks on the lily pads like a chicken.
We walked just a little farther and saw another gator much smaller than the one stalking the gallinules or was he stalking the gallinules? When we walked back to our vehicles, the alligator had disappeared. Maybe we were who the gator was interested in?