Venetian Gardens

We drove to the house mid morning, but no one was there. We walked around a bit anyway and then stopped by the grocery store for some fruit before heading back to the motorhome for lunch. Since there was no one to watch working, we decided to explore Venetian Gardens.  We have passed it a number of times and often said we would have to check it out one day.

Venetian Gardens is a city park in a cove off Lake Harris. It turned out to be quite nice.  Just inside the entrance is a large playground with a water-park for small children.  I didn’t get a good look, but I think it was mostly sprinklers and no water depth.  Good idea for the little ones.

We drove through the park and out the other side looking at the large older homes among gigantic live oaks on the lake front.  Then we turned around and parked in a parking area inside the park.  It is called Venetian Gardens because there are canals and bridges, a la Venice.

We followed the walkway along the big water.

The place is alive with water birds.

Reddish Egret

I was surprised to see an Anhinga.  I think of them as Everglades birds. That is not eggs under the wing; it is a pile of snail shells.

Anhinga

There were several bridges and islands among the canals.

The gap in the trees in the distance is the opening to the main body of Lake Harris.

Limpkin
Tricolored Heron

We found a nice bench overlooking the lake and that ended our walk, except to get back to the car.

Great White Egret

There are a good number of cypress trees in the park.

Cypress Trees

The bird we saw most often today was the Common Gallinule.  This bird is very dark, appearing black to me.  I thought it was a Common Gallinule until I got it on the computer.  It is a Purple Gallinule.  I should have known by the white forehead.

Purple Gallinule

 

We’ll go back to Venetian Gardens again for future walks.

Feb 12 & 13 – Walking Around the RV Park

We have not been too busy the last two days, so I don’t know why I forgot to post yesterday.  So here are two day’s worth of pictures around the RV park.  I really need to get you out a little more often.

We were taking one of our daily walks when Andy made a pit stop.  I sat by the canal to wait and watched a manatee swim by.  I ocurred to me that my manatee pictures usually post don’t have any scale. So here is a 17-ft boat in the background to give an idea how long the manatee is. Adult manatees average about 10-feet long and 800 to 1,200 pounds

b Manatee and Boat
Manatee and Boat

b Pink Flower

The manatee beat us to the end of the canal and joined two others lollygagging behind another boat.

b Three Manatees in Canal

This morning, we were sitting outside in our screen room drinking coffee when I heard a woodpecker.  In previous years, they have been common on the utility pole behind our shed, but we had not seen them yet this year.  I ran out to have a look.  One was on the pole and its mate was in the mangroves.

b Woodpecker
Woodpecker

Winter is not over yet so here is today’s weather report, courtesy of our neighbor Bill.

b Weather Report by Bill Latz
Bill Enjoying the Sunshine

At the waterfront, there was a truce between the Snowy Egret and the Tricolored Heron.  They were not a yard apart and were not paying any attention to each other.

b Snowy Egret
Snowy Egret
b Tricolored Heron
Tricolored Heron

A Little Green Heron was standing on the float.

b Little Gree Heron
Little Gree Heron

This Plumbago is growing next to a trailer near the park entrance. It is really bluer (more blue?) than this picture shows.

b Plumbago

Andy pointed out the moon so I took a daytime picture.  It turned out better than my nighttime shots. This was at 3:00 pm.

b The Moon at Three in the Afternoon
The Moon at Three in the Afternoon

I spotted a large iguana on a pier near the canal entrance.  When they are small, they are bright green, but get more brown as they age and grow.

b Iguana on Pier
Iguana on Pier

Here is a close up.

b Iguana Closeup
Iguana

A walk to the post office and two walks around the RV park got me five miles on the activity tracker today. But a stop on the Publix (grocery store) scale told me that I have gained another pound. It’s diet and exercise. It’s time to add more diet to the program.