A good spot for Young Limpkins

IMG_3296While walking at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Wellington Preserve this morning, I saw lots of young Limpkins out and about, foraging in the marsh, and vying for the best treetop lookouts. This fellow above discovered his own private perch atop a birdhouse, tucked away in a quiet alcove.  IMG_3257On the boardwalks there was ample evidence of ‘leftovers’ from the Limpkins’ favorite delicacy, the tasty Apple Snail. When they find the snails in the shallow ponds, they use their specially designed bill to pry open the thin operculum (literally, ‘little lid’) to get at the soft mollusk within (BirdNote).IMG_3238Native Florida Apple Snails lay small cream-colored egg clusters, and are smaller in size than the non-native apple snail. These non-native, or exotic pink egg clusters were plentiful today throughout the ponds, and the Limpkins seem to be just as happy to eat the exotics as the native Florida snails.IMG_3299The Limpkin is unique in many ways, not the least of which is that it is the sole member of its taxonomic family, Aramidae (Everglades National Park Service). “Looking like something between a crane and a rail, this odd wading bird has no close relatives.” (Audubon). Its range is limited to parts of Central America, the Caribbean, and Florida.

12 thoughts on “A good spot for Young Limpkins

    • I really hope you will see them, H.J. I’d venture a guess that you will, no matter which part of Florida you’re in, as they’re all over. One distinguishing feature I didn’t mention in this post is their amazingly loud screeching, what Audubon.org calls “their piercing banshee wails” – unmistakable! 😬
      Enjoy your trip – I’ll be watching your posts!

  1. Love that last capture, he looks so proud of himself! We don’t have these in the mid-Atlantic, but I’ve been lucky to capture them in Florida from a trip. I can remember how excited I was to see them! 🙂

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