Thursday, May 20, 2010

A surprise and Turtle Walk Thursday


Yesterday evening, my friend who's staying on West Gulf Drive, took a few pictures and a couple of videos, near resident access 2, for me to share with you. There were clouds that made some beautiful sunset photos.

Sit back and enjoy this relaxing video. :)

Thank you Jeanne for sharing. :)


The temperature when we first started out wasn't too warm, since the temperature was down to 74 last night. When we left the house, there wasn't a leaf or palm frond moving and it felt pretty humid. That made us think we would be eaten alive by noseeums on the beach. Today was our 3rd turtle walk of the season and we still have no nests in our zone. I was so thankful when I walked onto the beach and there was a good breeze blowing. It was strong enough to keep the noseeums away. YAY!

We walked straight out from the Buttonwood Access and there was a dolphin swimming past. That was a great way to start the walk.

There were only a few people out at first, but by the time the sun came up there were a lot more.

My good humor was dampened a little when we reached the first area marked off for the Snowy Plover nesting. There were beer cans scattered all over the place. As we were picking them up, I noticed one can in the nesting area, that I had to leave. There were also foot prints inside the roped off area. Looked like they came onto the beach from the backside of it and just walked though to one side, where they obviously partied for a while. Then walked back inside, toward the front the enclosure and walked all the way across it again. What jerks! I have a more fitting name for them, but can't use it here. :(

It's such a shame that some people just don't appreciate nature. There was the tiniest little baby plover there this morning, that I have ever seen. It was so cute. You could hardly see it running across the sand. Those jerks could have stepped on it last night in the dark, while it was sleeping. Or they could have mashed eggs in a nest. :( Their nests are just a shallow little dent in the sand with the eggs laying in it, totally unprotected, except for the efforts of SCCF. They aren't easily noticed, even in the daylight. Trying to catch a photo of the tiny birds is very difficult. But a Follower, Don, put a link to one of his photos in the Comment section, so I added it here. It's a very good close-up shot, taken while here on vacation during the past couple of weeks. Thank you for sharing it with us Don. :)

It's a great start to your day, when you watch the sunrise, while walking on the beach.

There were lots of pelicans hanging around today in large groups. I really didn't see them doing much fishing, they must have already had their breakfast.

There were three distinctive tide lines with shells scattered along each of them. There was also some green sea grass. I noticed yesterday, while crossing the causeway, that there was really a big amount of it floating in the bay.

People should smooth these sandcastles out at the end of the day, and fill holes, which they aren't doing. But I have to admit that I enjoy looking at what people consider beach art.

It's like they say, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

This was quite a surprise. Our first nesting sea turtle of the season. :)

We walked the one mile distance of our zone, before looking at any shells, and I was getting anxious to take a closer look to see what I might find.

When we turned to start going back the way we came, I saw a green sea anemone. I hadn't seen a green one before, so I had to stop to look it over. I'm thinking, maybe it's that color from eating green sea grass, since it appeared to have washed in with the grass.

I did my research and then decided to add this: The green sea anemone’s color is caused partly by pigments in its epidermis and partly by single-celled green algae living in it’s tissues. Certain individuals living in crevices away from sunlight tend to lack the algae; they are white. If you want to know more....

The castoff shell of a Horseshoe Crab.

There weren't many of what I call 'good shells'. Most of them were arks. But with so many white shells there, I wondered just how many Baby Ears may have been there, and I walked right past without seeing them. I wish I had an eye for those like some of my friends do.

I'm not really sure what this shell is, I think it is a Wentletrap. The top part looks like a Wentletrap but the bottom half is a little different than the white ones. I've found a couple of others like it before. ??Anybody??

A Sanibel police officer on the beach, stopping to talk to people now and then. I also saw him come to a stop, get out and walk over to pick up a plastic water bottle someone had dropped after we went through, picking up two bags full of trash. Thank you officer. :)

By bending way over and looking closely, I was finding small shells I wanted, along the way. It was beginning to get pretty warm out before we got back, so I didn't look as carefully as I would have liked. It always amazes me, after so many people have already looked these tide lines over, you can still find a lot of shells, especially the tiny ones.

I was walking across this area that had been a shallow tidal pool and found a Wentletrap. I had just been thinking that it was disappointing I hadn't found one this morning, and there it was! I found a teeny little mac n cheese a while before, so my morning was complete.

Today's treasures.

I'm hopeful we will find a nest next week.


Don said...

Your friends sunset/cloud pictures are beautiful.

The "jerks" with the Plovers bother me. We just returned from two weeks on Sanibel and I have never seen move Plovers or chicks. To walk through their nesting site is awful. I loved seeing the chicks. The are so small, fuzzy and fast. They are difficult to get a good photo.

Thanks for your site. It always makes me feel like I just got off of the beach myself and makes me think about when I can return to Sanibel.

Tootie said...

I'm glad you feel that way about the Snowy Plovers Don, I sure wish everyone did.

Knowing how much, all of you, enjoy a walk on the beach, beautiful sunrise and sunset, is what keeps me going. That is what I'm thinking about when I take a photo for this blog.

I hope you won't mind that I put a link to your Snowy Plover chick photo, in this post. You're right about how hard it is to get a good picture of them. I tried to get one of that very tiny chick yesterday, but with a 5 mp camera in my phone, you can guess how that turned out. :) It is amazing how fast their little legs can go. I've seen so many people walking in the direction of the nesting areas, armed with cameras and huge lenses. Were you one of them? :)

Don said...

I don't mind, I'm glad you did.

We (me and Debbie) were on Sanibel the first and second week of May. I took many pictures of the Plovers.

Was I one of them? I don't know. To most people I have huge white lens. To me, it isn't big enough. When you are taking photos of a chick that small, the more lens you have the better.

Most of my photos were taken near the Buttonwood access or between Sundial and Ocean's Reach. Maybe you did see me.

RottenMom said...

Poor Snowy Plovers. How does one have such disregard? And the trash you pick up, I can't even imagine the mindset of someone who just doesn't give a darn.

On a happier note, steinbeck's photos are great! Thank you for taking me on my beach walk today!

Tootie said...

If you were in that area on a Thursday morning between 6:30 and 8:00 with camera in hand, I probably did. :)

Don said...

No you didn't see me. My first Thursday I was a Bailey's Tract and the second Thursday I was at Ding Darling.

Colton Junod said...

We love watching the little plovers nest! They are also very protective of their nest! My family is coming down June 12-19. I ride in the Sea Turtle Jeep and Buggy! Love your blog!

Tootie said...

Colton, it's fun watching the mother running around trying to guard her babies, when they are going in different directions. She runs back and forth and looks around trying to keep track of them. I actually still remember how that feels myself, when my children were babies. LOL I do feel sorry for the poor mommy when people are walking past them, she gets very nervous trying to keep her babies out of their way. Makes you feel kind of bad to invade their territory.

I'm sure you'll have a great time riding in the jeep again this year. I hope you get to be there when a new nest is discovered. :)