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    Friday, June 08, 2018 5:37 PM

    he Green Heron is a stocky, small, solitary, somewhat secretive heron that lives around small bodies of water or densely vegetated areas. The "green" on the birds back is an iridescent color and often looks dull or dark blue. The Green Heron forages by mostly standing still or stalking very slowly at edge of shallow water or perched on emergent aquatic plants like this Cattail in the photo, waiting for prey to approach, sometimes using "bait," to lure fish within striking distance.

    Saturday, June 02, 2018 1:58 PM

    The Black Skimmer is truly a treat to see in action. The skimmer flies low, with its large lower mandible plowing through the water, snapping the bill shut when coming into contact with a fish. The graceful precision of the hunt is unlike any other bird and skimmers are sometimes placed in their own family, although they are truly related to the terns. Black Skimmers are coastal throughout most of North America and can often be seen in large flocks resting on sand bars and beaches.


    Saturday, May 26, 2018 11:40 AM

    The Mangrove Tree Crab can be found all along the barrier islands of Southwest Florida and may at first glance look like a spider climbing along our native Red, Black and White Mangroves. As crabs go, they are very small, only being an average of an inch across.

    Saturday, May 19, 2018 2:07 PM

    The Red-shouldered hawk is a very recognizable year-round bird of prey here in Southwest Florida, especially in swamps and deciduous and mixed forests with tall trees and open understory. This hawk of the woodlands will often be found nesting in pine woods and even mangroves throughout the state of Florida. This medium sized hawk hunts by watching from a perch and is often seen swooping out of a tall tree along the edge of the golf course to grabbing a meal by surprise that's travelling in the open turf. Their diet consists of small mammals, amphibians, reptiles and even other birds. Their quick agile flight capabilities will surprise you as the whip through thick wooded areas showing off their latest catch.

  • Sweet Shots: Swallow-tailed Kite
    Wednesday, May 09, 2018 5:56 PM

    The Swallow-tailed Kite, a migratory raptor, is perhaps the most beautiful and graceful bird of prey. It is extremely maneuverable in flight, catching flying insects in flight and swooping low over trees, picking small prey like lizards, snakes, and frogs from the tree tops. I've often observed them grabbing a meal from the tree trop or right of the turfgrass surface and eating while in flight, no easy task I'm sure. 

  • SWEET SHOTS: The Killdeer
    Saturday, May 05, 2018 10:36 AM

    The Killdeer, the least water associated of all of the shorebirds, is a Robin - sized Plover with brownish-tan on top and white below. It has two distinctive black bands on it's white chest and it's face is black with white patches. The Killdeer spends it's time walking and running along the ground. It breaks into flight when it's disturbed and typically flies for just a short period with quick intermittent wing beats. Keep a lookout for Killdeer in open, low vegetation areas such as parking lots, pastures, large open lawns and of course golf courses.

  • SWEET SHOTS: American Green Tree Frog
    Thursday, April 26, 2018 6:31 PM
    The American Green Tree Frog is a small frog, 1.5 - 2.5 inches in length, that is distributed throughout the Southeastern United States that greatly varies in color from bright green to gray or yellow. It has a light cream colored belly with a light white or yellow stripe running along the side of it's jaw and along it's body.
  • Sweet Shots from the Sanctuary GC: The Blue Grosbeak
    Friday, April 20, 2018 11:44 AM

    The Blue Grosbeak is not your common bird that you see on Sanibel year-round, rather a migratory that's actually spending some time on Sanibel right now. The recent cool front that pushed down and provided us with some much needed rain and some lower temperatures and humidity, also pushed many migratory birds to Florida's West coast as they were undoubtedly making their way north from the moderate temperatures and climates of South America. Now that the Grosbeaks and other migratories are here, they can feast on the great variety of food provided by our native plants throughout Sanibel and Captiva. 

  • Sweet Shots from the Sanctuary GC: The Brown Pelican
    Thursday, April 12, 2018 2:35 PM

    The Brown Pelican may be one of the most recognizable birds here on the islands. Hardly a day goes by when we don't see several flying overhead or seemingly skipping across the water alongside the 4th hole here at the Club. The Brown Pelican is a large bird, weighing up to 5 pounds and having a wingspan of up to 80". They live all along the Southern and Western sea coasts and are very seldom seen inland. Their unmistakable feeding habit is often misunderstood. It is often thought that the Pelican plunges into the water catching a fish but the Pelican is actually plunging into groups of fish, essentially stunning the fish and allowing the pelican to scoop up the disoriented fish with its large bill, which has an expandable throat pouch.  

  • Sweet Shots from the Sanctuary GC: The Gopher Tortoise
    Friday, April 06, 2018 1:58 PM

    The Gopher Tortoise, which is the state tortoise of Florida, has a strong presence on Sanibel and is a protected species throughout our state. It is considered a Keystone Species in that the burrows it creates with its large strong legs, are home to hundreds of other animals. Tortoises will often create more than one burrow and will travel back and forth between burrows for added protection and a variety of diet. The burrows are several feet in length and here on the islands are limited in depth due to our shallow water table. The burrow of the tortoise offers a climate controlled environment in that it stays cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.

  • SWEET SHOTS from The Sanctuary G.C.: White Ibis
    Thursday, February 15, 2018 6:07 AM
  • SWEET SHOTS from The Sanctuary G.C.: Bobcat
    Thursday, February 08, 2018 6:31 AM
  • SWEET SHOTS from The Sanctuary G.C.: Osprey
    Thursday, January 25, 2018 6:02 AM
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