Big Fun at Big "O" Bird Festival
It was a wild time at the Big "O" Birding Festival last weekend near Lake Okeechobee in South Central Florida. A real adventure for us newbie birders was the field trip out to the J-Seven Ranch where third-generation owner John Ward gave my group an up-close-and-personal safari around his cattle ranch.
Lots of excellent field trips, including photo shoots, boating on the Big O, and biking on the Lake Okeechobee Scenic Trail combined with wonderful camaraderie to make this a very enjoyable weekend. If you plan a visit to the area, be sure to stay at the historic Clewiston Inn in Clewiston, a charming 57-room inn built in 1938 and registered as a National Historic Site (http://www.clewistoninn.com/). To check out the festival schedule, go to http://www.bigobirdingfestival.com/
Below, two of the more exotic species spotted during the weekend included the Crested Carcara and the Happy Getaway Girl!