We have four good reports from the Bluebird Trails at the following County Parks:
Balm Boyette has 4 TM chicks in a second nesting, with 17 TM fledglings.
Lake Park has eight active BB nests, 6 of them second nestings, with 16 BB eggs, 15 BB chicks, and a total of 50 fledglings (32 BB, 12 CC, 6 CW).
Sargeant's Park has 4 BB chicks in a second nesting, with a total of 5 BB fledglings.
Flatwoods Park has 22 active BB nests, 11 of those are second nestings, with 48 BB eggs, 12 BB chicks, and a total of 101 fledglings (66 BB, 23 CC, 12 TM). See attached spreadsheet for details.
Sherry Keller and I were delighted to find that it had finally rained at Flatwoods Park last night, and the rain had cooled the park a bit. There was no more action in our spy-cam box, F1, but we're still hopeful that the bluebirds will complete their nest and raise some chicks in there. Box F11 was a very crowded nest with 5 chicks that just fledged. When we were cleaning out the box, we were amazed at the amount of poop and insect remains that 5 chicks can leave, so I included a picture (you're welcome!).
On the way to Flatwoods we spotted 3 feral pigs and a gopher tortoise. In the park, there was a lot of activity beginning with our Ruby-throated hummingbird in the native garden. Out on the trail we were so thrilled to see a beautiful roseate spoonbill fly in and join a couple of other water birds that were hunting in the drying lake. We saw little blue and tricolored herons, a great egret, whistling and wood ducks, two brown thrashers, two juvenile northern bobwhite quail, a Carolina wren, an eastern towhee, a red-bellied woodpecker, and heard great-crested flycatchers calling all over the park. I've included pictures that Steve Rickert sent me of a soft-shelled turtle and a gopher tortoise that he spotted at Balm Boyette.
Ironweed (Vernonia blodgettii) was blooming in our native garden and is a favorite with insects and our hummingbirds. Tarflowers (Befaria racemosa), that get their name from their sticky flowers, are finally blooming all over the park. In the wetland areas, the buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis) are blooming like little sputniks.