Crandon Park Birding, 4/20/24

On Saturday, April 20, twenty birders joined me for a morning of birding at Crandon Park on Key Biscayne. We began the morning at Crandon Gardens, where we found a nice variety of waterbirds including Egyptian Goose, Common Gallinule, Anhinga, Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Little Blue, Tricolored and Green Herons and White Ibis. Other birds seen in or around the gardens included Indian Peafowl, Mourning Dove, Sandhill Crane, Black Vulture, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Gray Kingbird, Fish Crow, Gray Catbird, Cape May, Palm and Prairie Warblers and Northern Cardinal. We also encountered a sunbathing American Crocodile at one of the garden’s lakes.

Next, we walked out to Crandon Beach, where we found good numbers of Semipalmated Plovers, Sanderlings and Laughing Gulls, as well as a couple each of Ruddy Turnstone and Royal Tern. Other birds seen at the beach included Double-crested Cormorant, Brown Pelican, Great Egret and Osprey.

After returning to our cars, most participants called it a morning, but two participants joined me for some bonus birding at the north end of the park. During our beach walk from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Nature Center to the fossilized reef at Bear Cut Preserve, we added three shorebirds to our trip list: Black-bellied Plover, Piping Plover and Spotted Sandpiper. We ended the morning with 40 species; all are listed here.

Piping Plover: Photo by Brian Rapoza