Bird Watching

Bird watching could be one of the most non-demanding hobbies there is. All you need is feeders in your yard and leisure to sit by your window or on your porch and enjoy. If you haven’t started bird watching yet, here are some lovely species...

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Bird watching could be one of the most non-demanding hobbies there is. All you need is feeders in your yard and leisure to sit by your window or on your porch and enjoy.

If you haven’t started bird watching yet, here are some lovely species you can expect to see in your neighborhood this time of year.

Baltimore Oriole

The female is yellow with a black face. She migrates through Florida in both the spring and fall. If you have fruit trees, especially, you might see her; she loves drinking nectar. The male is distinctive with his place head and bright orange feathers. He is only in Florida during Spring, most likely in April.

Belted Kingfisher

This bright blue bird is one of the first winter migrants around the wetlands. If you live by marshy areas, or lakes, you will most likely see him in late summer.

Black Skimmer

Another bird you are likely to see around the lakes in summer. This bird’s distinctive lower bill, which sticks out beyond his upper bill, makes him difficult to miss. If you hear a sharp bark, it might not be your neighbor’s dogs, either.

Blackpoll Warbler

This little black-and-white bird is among many warblers who pass through Florida during spring and fall migrations. They are fond of high trees.

Bobolink

Both male and female Boblinks can be seen during the spring and fall migration. They also like the wetlands, and are cousins of the Red-winged blackbird. Conseqently, the male is mostly black, with some white markings. The female is brown and white.

Brown-headed Cowbird

These dark birds travel in flocks and may descend upon your feeder en masse, not leaving till they’ve cleaned it out. Females are known to lay their eggs in other birds’ nests. Strangely, most birds will raise the young as their own without a second thought.

Burrowing Owl

Another interesting bird if you live by grassy areas. As the name implies, these owls build their nests in hollows underground, sometimes taking advantage of old gopher or tortoise holes. They are apparently very animated and a favorite with photographers.

Carolina Chickadee

Despite the name, this little black-capped bird also lives in northern Florida. You can hear his distinctive “Chickadee-dee-dee” year-round.

Carolina Wren

Again, this tawny bird also lives in Florida year-round. Its favorite spots are under bushes and shrubs. They tend to be shy, so don’t be surprised if you hear them more than see them.

Common Yellowthroat

This bird looks almost like a racoon, with large black masks around its eyes. It is a year-round resident, but may be more visible in the winter when many other birds migrate. It also is fond of insects; a friend to aphid-beset gardeners.

These are just a few of the birds you might be able to catch sight of now. Because of Florida’s temperate climate, winter is actually prime bird-watching season, as many northern and western species come here during the winter months. Keep an eye out and see how many different species you can spot!

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