Birding Belize 2006
Journal 09 Jan 06
|We left Fairbanks, AK at 5:00 PM AST on 08 Jan 06 and arrived in Miami, FL at 1:00 PM EST on 09 Jan 06. Even dozing on the red-eye flight, it was a long trip. It was intermittently turbulent Anchorage to Chicago, making sleeping in a 737 a little more challenging than usual. We did pick up a few birds on our Aircraft Life List, including three Red-tailed Hawks on the taxiways at O'Hare. Oddly, those were the only Red-tailed Hawks of the trip.
Arrived in Miami at 1:00 PM but by the time we had the luggage, the rental car and driving instructions in English, it was 2:30 PM and we were fighting traffic westbound on the Tamiami Highway towards Fort Myers. Note for those daring the third world country that is Miami Int'l Airport: Dollar Rent-a-Car has the slowest shuttle service.
The plan was to warm up for birding in Belize by a couple of days in "Ding" Darling NWR and Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. To have some time over on the Florida west coast, we planned on the dash over on arrival, despite the red-eye flight. Maybe not the best plan.
We did have some success driving along Tamiami Highway, especially the first parts of Hy 94 Loop Road west of Forty-Mile Bend. Good view and photos of Wood Stork, Anhinga, Great Egret, Great Blue Heron and White-eyed Vireo. And a sad view of a drowned Great Egret, its leg still wrapped in the monofilament fishing line that killed it. But it was too dark to bird from south of Monroe Station on, and we drove in to the Fort Myers Beach Holiday Inn in the dark. The first slough on the Loop Road was especially good.
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