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Friday, March 3, 2017

Wildlife Along the La Chua Trail in Paynes Prairie State Park

Eric at the 1890s railroad
overpass at the La Chua
Everyone we've talked to during our time in Florida has recommended this trail.  Wildlife is abundant here.

I didn't expect to walk
through a barn....

...or through a gated area.

Besides birds and Alligators, Horses and Bison live in this section of Paynes Prairie State Park.

An Alligator & a Traffic
Cone coexist in this
quiet area.

Alligators lounge along
the banks of the canal
that runs through this
section of Paynes Prairie.

sits in a tree.

Eric & I watch this Alligator
for a few minutes.

The flesh beneath his mouth
becomes larger as he

Males "bellow" throughout the year, especially during mating season.  I found a Popular Science article that links bellowing to announcing the male Alligator's size to the ladies.  

A Great Blue Heron 
wades in the water.

Eric looks out over a

An Alligator floats at the
foot of the spillway.

We speculate on why it's there.... waiting for a meal, or enjoying the water flowing around him, or her.

 Alligators are everywhere!  Eric stops counting them.

A Turtle poses
for me.

I like this pic of an Alligator
is shallow water. 

An Anhinga dries its
wings in the sun.

This small Alligator basks

One of the few
Water Lily blooms.

A bench overlooks the field
of green water plants. 

This Alligator watches
the hikers go by...

 Ibis look for a mid
 morning snack. 

Bison and Horses are not near the trail today.  I took these photos with my long lens.

According Park Ranger
Jack Gillen, Bison are 
native to Florida.

Horses graze even farther

At the distance these pics
were taken, the image
looks like a painting.

We find three young

settles in a tree.

Eric uses his binoculars
to look at birds.
 This low area with lots of water is a great place to look for birds.

This is an immature Double-

There are so many Alligators here that I modify the Old MacDonald Had a Farm song....

Here an Alligator, there an

Everywhere an Alligator.

Old Paynes Prairie is a Nature Preserve... E - I - E - I - O...

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