The Vermilion Flycatcher that John Hintermister first found on the 8th was still at the La Chua observation platform on Friday morning, when Frank Goodwin managed to get a photo of it: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30736692@N00/8197165695/in/photostream
It was still there on the 18th, too, and seen by Frank, Mike Manetz, and Charlene Leonard. As they approached the observation platform – “in the largest patch of barnyard grass, about half way between Gator Point and the platform” – they saw a Le Conte’s Sparrow, and Charlene managed to get a photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30736692@N00/8197165399/in/photostream (By the way, “barnyard grass” is the fluffy blonde stuff in which all the Savannah and Le Conte’s Sparrows were hiding at Orange Lake last winter.)
Saturday’s Cedar Key field trip, led by Caleb Gordon, was hugely successful. In addition to five Red-breasted Nuthatches at the museum, there was a White-winged Scoter “incredibly close and cooperative” off the downtown fishing pier (still present and “extremely viewable just off the beach on the road to the airstrip” on Sunday, along with a Surf Scoter, according to Dale Henderson), a Peregrine Falcon seen by all, and a Short-tailed Hawk seen by a few on the road to Shell Mound. On the way back to Gainesville, three of the cars made a detour to a birding spot south of Bronson, where they found an Ash-throated Flycatcher and a Clay-colored Sparrow.
Vismig Common Loons – if you haven’t been keeping up with your British birding slang, “vismig” means “visibly migrating” – continue to pass overhead on their way to the Gulf. On the morning of the 17th Adam Kent saw 15 going over his SE Gainesville home and I saw 5 going over J.J. Finley Elementary School.
Barbara Woodmansee visited the Hague Dairy today, looking for birds, but found herself distracted by the great variety of butterflies: “Had 4 White M Hairstreaks, every sulphur species there is except Dogface, including 8-10 Orange Sulphurs! I watched one laying eggs in the clover. Long-tailed Skipper and Dorantes Longtail, Zebra Heliconians, Gulf and Variegated Fritillary, Carolina Satyrs, Fiery Skippers, Clouded Skippers, and Whirlabouts, both Painted and American Ladies – lots of them, including late instar American Lady caterpillar. Lots of White Peacocks and Common Buckeyes, a Monarch, Phaon Crescents, lots of Checkered Whites and checkered-skippers (I think I saw both Tropical and Common). No swallowtails of any kind – sort of surprising. We had 24 species in about 2 hours – not bad for late November!”