A large portion of the marsh behind Botany Bay Beach is cordoned off to keep humans from interfering with breeding shore birds. Their nests are nothing more than depressions in the sand and aside from the obvious egg destruction by human feet many of these birds just don’t like to be disturbed by man or his pets while raising their young.
Breeding season was over when I took these images but a few young stragglers were on the beach on August 4th.
This young tern didn’t seem to know what to do. The sun had just come up and he probably should have been looking for breakfast.
An adult was nearby, but I didn’t see them interact.
This may be the same young bird, I spotted a bit further down the beach.
Since I walked this path a month ago the water has been drained out of the pond behind this Eastern Eastern Kingbird.
Dragonflies were hovering over the mostly dry pond bed and the Kingbird was taking advantage. He had a nice snack of what looked like an Eastern Pondhawk between these two images. Unfortunately swaying reeds on the bank ruined all images of that!
A chick joined the adult calling to be fed. The adult didn’t seem impressed and soon they swooped off together. Time for the juvenile to catch his own lunch.
I’ve stopped to watch Black-bellied Whistling Ducks in this marshy area several times this summer. One day last week a few were quite close to the walk way and were less skittish than on previous visits.
Some of the chicks are nearly adult size but are still sticking close to a parent.
This one had been standing on the end of the of the walkway and decided to join the others…
…landing in the short greenery with the family group behind him.
Brown Pelicans nest on several islands that are really not much more than sand bars off the Charleston, SC coast. Storms and the tides shift the availability and viability of nesting sites from year to year. I had the privileged to observe one of these sites this morning, where the Pelican chicks are out of their nests but not yet flying or getting their own food.
This particular island was re-nourished with sand dredged from the Folly River last year with spectacular results for this year’s nesting Pelicans.
Shore access is not allowed during nesting season; these images were all taken from a boat at a shutter speed of 1/2000th of a second to help compensate for the boat movement.
It was a delightful outing and seeing these Pelican chicks was a real treat. This appears to be two sets of chicks, with the younger group testing out their bills in the water.