By The Canal

Florida was originally nearly all wetlands. Over the years miles of wetlands were drained for buildings and people.  Today there are many canals and lakes in neighborhoods where you can often see wildlife drawn to the water.  These photos were taken by a canal not far from my neighborhood.





Muscovy ducks are unusual Florida residents. They hiss instead of quack, they fly clumsily, and they somehow flourish in Florida’s urban environment. Native to Central and South America, they have lived in Florida for many years and can be found near lakes and canals statewide.  These birds were illegally released primarily by private individuals for ornamental purposes or as pets. Muscovy ducks can be extremely prolific and local populations can increase dramatically in a short time. As a result, controversies frequently arise between residents who enjoy the birds and residents who consider them a nuisance.





The Florida sandhill crane (G. c. pratensis), numbering 4,000 to 5,000, is a non-migratory year-round breeding resident. They are joined every winter by 25,000 migrating cranes.







I hope you enjoyed a few of the local birds in central Florida.











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I was raised in Tennessee but have lived in Florida for many years. Love my small home in the Tampa Bay area and its developing garden. My decorating style is eclectic - some vintage, some cottage, all with a modern flair. Pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Spent many years in social services but am happily retired.

29 thoughts to “By The Canal”

    1. the boas are in the Everglades and so far hundreds have been caught and destroyed. There is a reward for bringing them in and professional hunters are now working. Keep your fingers crossed. I have never seen them in neighborhoods. Birds of prey pick off a few chicks each year, but they have to eat too.

    1. we have herons, storks, egrets, and mallards but no swans. I’d love to see swans – they are so graceful and beautiful.

  1. There are some muscovy ducks in one of the mitigation ponds near our Florida home; I kind of figured they were “invasive species” because they weren’t listed in any of my bird books for Florida, but I still like seeing them. Didn’t know they hissed. Guess either I am hard of hearing or I didn’t get close enough (or both). Hopefully see all my favorite Florida species this season once again!

  2. I’ve new seen a Muscovy duck. Momma duck certainly has a bounty of chicks to care for.
    The cranes are so tall and beautiful. I saw them once in the Yukon–fabulous!
    Have a lovely week, Carol.

  3. Carol – it’s always interesting what happens when non-natives are released into a new environment. Usually not a happy ending! We have sandhill cranes here throughout the summer – they recently left for their migration! Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday!

  4. Hi Carol, They are doing the same in my neighborhood. Tearing down wooded areas and the wildlife has nowhere to go. I have seen a fox and my neighbors have reported sightings of all sorts of animals. But it’s because they have nowhere to go. I don’t understand why they couldn’t use some of the empty buildings and remodel them instead of what they are doing. It’s sad to me. But your pictures are really pretty. The one duck looks like he has two beaks. 🙂 Very interesting. Thanks for sharing at #aclwcc. Pinned and tweeted.

  5. We see those ducks by the mall here but I’ve never seen so many ducklings! They are cute…the young ones! lol Enjoy your week! We are having those pop up showers every day.

  6. Interesting birds, Carol. Those Muscovy Ducks are certainly unusual looking. There are parts of the west where sandhill cranes land in large numbers during migration and Colorado has a few spots where they do that. I’d love to see them fly in someday.

  7. Thanks for the info as I am looking to move part-time to Orlando, Florida! My only concern is the creatures that live in the lakes and rivers that may eat me!

  8. I was not aware of the muscovy duck issue in Florida; I actually have never seen one there. I’ll have to pay more attention. I was familiar with them as domestic birds kept by some in the countryside when I lived in rural Arkansas years ago – they make excellent “watchdogs”. Couldn’t believe all the ducklings that Mom had, though. I have seen the sandhill cranes. When I visited Tampa (where I lived many years ago and have a couple of cousins there) I remember the anhingas along Bayshore Blvd. Now, I find out they may actually be cormorants and I will have to check my pictures. Well, that’s part of the fun of bird ID.

  9. We are back in our cottage by our canal over here in this corner of Florida! But all I have seen on it so far is “snowbirds”. (Sorry — I like your bird life better, even if I am one of the dreaded winter visitors!)

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