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Rocking with Rockefeller

Historic Ormond


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & 2005 Migrating by Mercedes & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

19 January, 2005

I got up early on the 19th and took a couple of pictures of the sunrise.
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The ocean appears to have calmed down a bit. Then we just stayed in the condo and watched TV. We saw the seagulls bathing in and drinking the oceanside pool. I didn't get organized to go to The Casement's until it would have been too late for a tour.

When Bob wanted to know what about dinner, I did persuade him to go to the Brickyard for dinner. There was a wonderful sunset as we went across the bridge over the Halifax River.
100_5783.JPGSunset

Sunset

Sunset

Sunset


The Brickyard in the restaurant name of course references the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The first motorsport event at the track consisted of seven motorcycle races. And also there is Bike Week in Daytona each spring when the Daytona Speedway holds motorcycle races
Bike parking only

Bike parking only

Brickyard front door

Brickyard front door

Table lamp and bike model reflected in the mirror

Table lamp and bike model reflected in the mirror

Part of the Brickyard restaurant

Part of the Brickyard restaurant


I had a nice steak, and Bob had a pork BBQ sandwich.
My steak

My steak

Pork BBQ

Pork BBQ


It was $24.78 and Bob gave her a $5 tip. She was very nice and efficient.
Tobacco Exotica store

Tobacco Exotica store


On the way home, he stopped at Publix and bought some windshield washer fluid and then because I'm almost out of Tylenol and they didn't have the arthritis kind at Publix he went to Walgrens where it was very cheap.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

This is our last full day and our last chance to go to The Casements. Even so, I didn't get organized until 11 am.
Pool (heated)

Pool (heated)


I took a picture of the courtyard pool (the heated one) and noted that there were also shuffleboard courts.
Shuffleboard courts

Shuffleboard courts


There are at last people playing on the edge of the surf and driving on the beach.
Car on the Beach from Plantation Island balcony

Car on the Beach from Plantation Island balcony


Driving is allowed on this beach. The beach is always open and free to pedestrians and bicyclists depending on tides and access ramps being opened. In the Transitional Zone from Granada Blvd south to Seabreeze Blvd, driving is allowed on the east or seaward side of the markers. The Main Street Pier is a Traffic Free Zone. At present the beach is open to vehicles from sunrise to sunset Nov. 1 through April 30 and from 8 a.m.-7 p.m., May 1 through Oct. 31. There is a $5 per day per vehicle user fee to drive on the beach February 1 through November 30.

While Daytona often gets the credit, Ransom Olds and Alexander Winton were two of the first racers on the hard packed sand of Ormond Beach- dead heating down the beach at 57 MPH. Anderson and Price then organized the first auto races on the beach. By 1904, the Florida East Coast Automobile Association boasted 200 members.

We drove over
The Casements from Riverside Drive

The Casements from Riverside Drive

Parking

Parking


We parked beside the MacDonald House next to the tennis courts,
Tennis Courts

Tennis Courts


MacDonald house from the parking lot

MacDonald house from the parking lot


This house at 38 East Granada Blvd is a Queen Anne style house and now houses the Ormond Beach Historical Trust. They used to run a little trolley around to the historical places, but the docent at The Casements said they don't do this anymore. It was bought in 1929 by the MacDonalds who are/were the owners of Billy's Tap Room which is next door. Today it is the city Welcome Center and has a mini-museum. It is open to the public. The sign on the front door says that if there are chairs on the porch, it is open.
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and walked over
Casements sign

Casements sign


Rockefeller Gardens and Grounds of the Casements

Rockefeller Gardens and Grounds of the Casements


under the porte-couchiere.
Bob walking up to the house

Bob walking up to the house

Gift shop is window on the right

Gift shop is window on the right

Looking out from under the portecochere

Looking out from under the portecochere


The lady at the reception desk told us that the lady who gives the tours was just finishing one up and we could go on the next one.
4752751-Casement_Windows_Ormond_Beach.jpgCasement Window in the waiting area

Casement Window in the waiting area

Gift Shop from inside the lobby

Gift Shop from inside the lobby

Print for sale

Print for sale


The Casements was built by a minister opposite the Ormond Hotel which was an enormous wooden hotel built in 1887.
Condo building that replaced the old Ormond Hotel

Condo building that replaced the old Ormond Hotel


It took its name from the many casement windows. Flagler convinced John D. Rockefeller (one of his partners in Standard Oil) that he should come down to Florida for the winter, and he usually stayed at the Ormond Hotel - taking a whole floor for himself and staff. One day he found out that another person who also had a similar amount of floor space and people was paying less than he was. When he asked why, the answer was that he was the richest man in the world and he could afford it. Bad Answer.
Rockefeller Dynasty

Rockefeller Dynasty


So in 1918, he bought The Casements, and he stayed there every winter, reading the paper in the morning and playing 8 holes of golf in the afternoon. His wife and children (except for John D Jr. and one of his sons) never came down with him, they stayed in NY. He died in that house in 1937.
Fireplace

Fireplace

Wicker chair

Wicker chair


Guide explaining

Guide explaining


Cupola

Cupola

Sign in the kitchen "Casement Guild Only"

Sign in the kitchen "Casement Guild Only"

large_435470484752777-Contrast_The..mond_Beach.jpg4752775-One_of_the_bedrooms_Ormond_Beach.jpgGuide and me reflected in the bedroom mirror

Guide and me reflected in the bedroom mirror

Table with "Do Not Touch" sign

Table with "Do Not Touch" sign

4752621-Inteior_Ormond_Beach.jpgclose-up of the clock

close-up of the clock

After his death, they took photos of all the rooms for estate tax purposes, and those photographs still exist.
Picture of the original Living Room

Picture of the original Living Room

Bedroom photo for probate values

Bedroom photo for probate values

Historic photo of the kitchen

Historic photo of the kitchen

Old Photo of the area where Casements is

Old Photo of the area where Casements is


The house does not have original furniture except for one room where they have documentation that the furniture there was actually in the house. Most of the wood was chopped up and burned by hippies who invaded the house. When the city bought the house, it was in horrible shape. (There are photos of that too)
Photo taken before restoration

Photo taken before restoration


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It is being used by the city for meetings etc while it is being restored.

On the third floor there is an exhibition of Boy Scout memorabilia
Boy Scout Uniforms

Boy Scout Uniforms


and also hand embroidered regional Hungarian folk costumes.
4752747-Hungarian_costumes_Ormond_Beach.jpgHungarian costumes

Hungarian costumes


Explanation of Folk Costumes

Explanation of Folk Costumes


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The gardens feature citrus trees, a grand promenade, streams and small bridges and a variety of seasonal flower displays during the year.

We also learned that Billy's Tap Room and Grill which was on the other side of the MacDonald House was Ormond Beach's oldest restaurant - it was established in 1922 by the man who used to run the tea room at the hotel across the street. Since by this time it was 12:40, we walked over to Billy's for lunch.
4753036-Historic_downtown_Ormond_Beach.jpgSign out front

Sign out front

Bar area

Bar area

Part of the interior

Part of the interior


Specials board

Specials board


Bob had an egg salad sandwich
Egg salad sandwich

Egg salad sandwich


and I had a crabcake which was extremely good with actual lump crabmeat and not a lot of mishmash in it.
My crabcake sandwich

My crabcake sandwich


I ordered creme brulee for dessert,
4752551-Part_of_menu_Ormond_Beach.jpgBrownie Fudge Sundae

Brownie Fudge Sundae


but they were out of it, so Bob and I shared a brownie fudge sundae. The bill was $19.65 before the tip.

I had gotten a walking/driving tour pamphlet of historic Ormond Beach at The Casements,
map of historic places

map of historic places


Sign about Indian Mound

Sign about Indian Mound


On the corner of Mound and South Beach, this is the last of the many prehistoric mounds that were constructed by native people of the area . This particular St. Johns period mound dates back to about 800 A.D. and has the skeletal remains of more than 125 people buried in the sand. This was common practice at that time. The bones of most of the deceased were 'bundled' and as more bodies were buried and covered with layers of sand, the mound grew over time.
Indian Mound 800 AD

Indian Mound 800 AD


Cupola -From the historic trail brochure

Cupola -From the historic trail brochure


This cupola was on the top of the Hotel Ormond for 204 years. It is now in Fortunato park on the northwest end of the Granada (Ormond - State Route 40) Bridge. The building is open from 2 to 4, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. A mural, pictures and memorabilia are on display in the building.
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The hotel was one of the largest wooden structures in the United States. The hotel burned and/or was demolished in 1992. The Ormond Beach Historical Trust saved the cupola and five years later they had a structure built in the park to hold it.
Pilgrim's Rest 1908

Pilgrim's Rest 1908


This is the Pilgrims Rest Baptist Church Cemetery formed in 1908. The church was moved when SR 40 was widened, The church was donated to the city of Ormond Beach rather than being torn down.
Church in the park - inset nearby roadside sign

Church in the park - inset nearby roadside sign


Pilgrim's Rest from the car

Pilgrim's Rest from the car


so we spent some time tracking down some of the historic houses,
William McNary Home 166 North Beach Street

William McNary Home 166 North Beach Street


William McNary had been in Florida briefly during the Civil War, so when he retired from the New Britain Connecticut Corbin Lock Company in 1874, he came to back to Florida to spend his retirement. He settled on land from the present day Dix Avenue north to Hernandez Avenue. He planted groves that reached from Younge Street to Nova Rd. This house sited at 166 N. Beach Street was one of the first ones on the mainland. It is listed on the national register of historic places, but it is a private house which is not open to the public
Dix Hall 178 N. Beach St. c 1876

Dix Hall 178 N. Beach St. c 1876


Located next to the McNarys at 178 N. beach street, this house was named for McNary's unmarried sister-in-law who lived there. The old house has remained essentially the same through its life. For many years, the second floor was one large room which was used for social gatherings and political meetings. On April 22, 1880, at the town meeting held here, the New Britain Settlement was incorporated as Ormond, later to become Ormond Beach. The Dix House was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989 - Building - #88001721
Yacht Club building from the bridge

Yacht Club building from the bridge

Sign

Sign


In 1910, a group of 40 Ormond residents decided they needed a yacht club to moor their boats. They arranged with the city to build this two story structure on the Halifax River west bank at the foot of Lincoln Ave. The agreement was that the building would not appear on the tax rolls, so it doesn't appear on any maps even today. The present membership is 25 men, all Ormond Beach residents. The second floor is no longer used, and the long dock that used to extend into the river was destroyed years ago by a storm. Members meet to play cards and shoot pool on the first floor.
A member of the club wrote me:
"The function of the club in present day is to preserve and restore the building itself. We have over 50 some members who do the work of the restoration and the work of fund raising to pay for the materials for the restoration (many women members). Until restoration is completed there are no events inside the building except for the monthly meeting held on the 1st Monday of each month, upstairs. We are now listed on the National Registry for Historic Structures"
Picture used by permission

Picture used by permission

nwall.JPGFireplace inside

Fireplace inside


Cement block house built in 1910

Cement block house built in 1910


Trapper's Lodge today

Trapper's Lodge today

The Porches

The Porches


The Porches is a historic site located at 176 South Beach Street. On October 6, 1988, it was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
705825951894558-Ormond_Woman..mond_Beach.jpgOrmond Woman's Club - 42 Beech St.

Ormond Woman's Club - 42 Beech St.


On January 9, 1891, when Ormond was less than 20 years old, a group of residents met in the Union Church to create a community service organization whose goals were “to promote neatness and order in the village, to do whatever may lead to improve and beautify our town as a place of residence and keep it in a healthful condition.” The Village Improvement Association (VIA) was formed by a group of women. They built the Anderson-Price Memorial building (named after the two men who built the Hotel Ormond) in 1918. The building is a rare example of early 20th century architecture that has survived with few changes to its original appearance. It remains a community resource as designated by its founders.
311 John Anderson Drive

311 John Anderson Drive

253 John Anderson Hwy

253 John Anderson Hwy


Melrose Hall - 150 S. Beach

Melrose Hall - 150 S. Beach


Lion House

Lion House

1937-128S Halifax

1937-128S Halifax


such as one made of palmetto logs called Talahloko
Talahloko through the driver's window of our car

Talahloko through the driver's window of our car


and one made of mahogany from a shipwreck.
Nathan Cobb Cottage at 137 Orchard Lane

Nathan Cobb Cottage at 137 Orchard Lane


This cottage is at 137 Orchard Lane, which is a short pathlike road that runs parallel to the Halifax River between Riverside Drive and Halifax Drive. It is a small three room house built of timber salvaged from the Nathan Cobb shipwreck of December 5, 1896. There used to be a separate kitchen connected to the main house by a 'dog trot' of narrow porch with a shingled room, but that is now gone. Local historian Alice Strickland lived here as a young girl.
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A friend wrote and told me.
"I grew up here and vividly recall most of the sites you pictured and know many of the family's whose homes you photographed, most notably the MacDonald's and Billy's Tap Room. I went to school with McSwain children, the MacDonald boys and others. However, the Cobb Cottage, holds a special place in my heart. My second grade teacher lived here in 1965 and 1966 and I visited her there often. It is as rustic and cozy inside as the outside looks. Over the mantel of the fireplace hung the piece of wood from the wrecked Nathan Cobb ship upon which was carved it's name. Story has it that the cottage was built from wood salvaged from the wreck. There is a marker in the ocean just off shore where the wreck can be seen at low tide, like you mentioned."
1904-113E Granada Ormond Garage

1904-113E Granada Ormond Garage


Then we went back to the condo and I had a swim in the pool. The water was delightful, but it was a bit nippy when I got out. We went to dinner at the Olive Garden.
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I had stuffed shells with shrimp
Stuffed shells with shrimp

Stuffed shells with shrimp


4752603-Salad_and_bread_Ormond_Beach.jpgSalad, Rolls and Lasagna

Salad, Rolls and Lasagna


and Bob had lasagna. It was $26.42.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 06:24 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Between the Space Coast and the Everglades

Interval in Miami


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & 2005 Migrating by Mercedes & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Jan 21, 2005

Packed and checked out. Although they told us that local calls were 25 cents each, they confessed when we checked out that their telephone monitor wasn't working, so they asked us to estimate local calls. I said 8, but when I actually counted up later it was really probably 15. But I paid them $2.00.

I kind of wanted to avoid I-95, but that was really the shortest way to go. I also wanted to see the Sebastian Inlet lighthouse, so we got off I-95 and went across to US 1. We went across to A1A at Wabasso, and I decided it was too late to try to drive north to Sebastian, so we drove down to Vero Beach, thinking we could stop there for lunch. The hurricane did a lot of damage there, and there were no restaurants on A1A that we saw.
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So we went across the bridge by the Vero Beach Marina (although I would have liked to stop in the marina to see if there was anyone we knew - we saw a lot of boats rafted there- Bob's comment was that everyone who used to be in Ft. Pierce came to Vero Beach), but we were getting hungry so we didn't stop.
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I knew there used to be a restaurant on the other side of the bridge, but Bob didn't turn back toward the river. We eventually ate at a Boston Market. They've taken out the butternut squash, which I always liked.
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I had 3 vegetables or sides (creamed spinach, sweet potatoes, and mac and cheese, and Bob had a meatloaf sandwich for $12.69, From there we crossed over onto the Florida Turnpike at Ft. Pierce, and whistled on down to Miami. We got to our daughter's house while she was at practice with the kids, and Jim was out fishing. Then they had a pot luck (she roasted a turkey) and Jake was staying overnight.
Jake and grandson watching TV

Jake and grandson watching TV

January 22, 2005
Saturday, was more of the same. The kids were having their team pictures taken, so our daughter was doing that.
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Our granddaughter was first, and then Bob took the two boys to her, and got fuel in the Mercedes. I was happy to have the DSL modem again and did a lot of posting of photos onto Virtual Tourist. I've decided not to get prints except of people - the scenery ones I will just post on VT. We were going to eat at home, so there was a long discussion of what we would order, and it ended up being pizza. Then everyone but me watched Harry Potter III.
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January 23, 2005
Sunday they went to a pig roast, and Bob primed the dining room wall that he installed earlier, including the ceiling which is extremely textured and difficult to paint.

January 24, 2005
Monday January 24th, my daughter took me so I could have my hair cut, and then we got packed and left for the Everglades.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 13:34 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Alligators and Anhingas in the Everglades

Heading for Flamingo


View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & 2005 Migrating by Mercedes & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Monday January 24, 2005

We left our daughter's for the Everglades and the Keys. First I wanted to go to Biscayne National Park so I could get a stamp in my passport book. This is a park which is mostly water - we've been through it on our boat.
Chart of shallows areas (light blue)

Chart of shallows areas (light blue)


The Visitor's center is about the only part of the park on land.
Sign

Sign


Bob walking in

Bob walking in


Fish sculpture on the wall at the entrance

Fish sculpture on the wall at the entrance

Big Fish on the wall

Big Fish on the wall


Hurricane Andrew sign

Hurricane Andrew sign

Seawall

Seawall

No fishing sign

No fishing sign

Dante B. Fascell sign overlooking the marina

Dante B. Fascell sign overlooking the marina


Canoes and kayaks for rent

Canoes and kayaks for rent

Emergency siren sign

Emergency siren sign

Tour boats

Tour boats


Visitor's Center

Visitor's Center


We went up to the visitor's center and looked at the informational video tape,
large_403248353782759-Scene_from_t..ional_Park.jpgCoral from the film

Coral from the film

Keys

Keys

film of dolphins

film of dolphins


which was more about the politics of the park than about the park itself, and we looked at the exhibits.
Heron

Heron

along the Perimeter

along the Perimeter

Brazilian Pepper and Cattle Egret - Invasive Species

Brazilian Pepper and Cattle Egret - Invasive Species


Patch reef

Patch reef


Homesteaders

Homesteaders


Jellyfish

Jellyfish

Mangrove Water Snake and Mangrove Cuckoo

Mangrove Water Snake and Mangrove Cuckoo


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Desk in the visitor's Center

Desk in the visitor's Center


The lady at the center gave me a National Parks calendar.
Logo on the floor

Logo on the floor


We ate lunch at the first place we came to which was Appleby's. I had
Chicken quesidilla appetizer

Chicken quesidilla appetizer

Bob had a half chicken salad

Bob had a half chicken salad


(which was almost more than he could eat) and then I had for dessert
Apple chimi

Apple chimi

Applebee's Bill

Applebee's Bill


Road to the Everglades

Road to the Everglades


Thanks to.Ernest F. Coe (for whom the Homestead Visitor's Center is named), Congress passed a park bill in 1934. Dubbed by opponents as the "alligator and snake swamp bill," the legislation stalled during the Great Depression and World War II. Finally, on December 6, 1947, President Harry S Truman dedicated the Everglades National Park.

In that same year, Marjory Stoneman Douglas first published "The Everglades: River of Grass."

Today, Everglades National Park is a World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.

The original "people of the Glades" (Tequestas and Calusas) established villages at the mouths of rivers, on offshore islands and on hammocks marked by huge shell mounds. But by 1800, slave raids and European diseases had reduced the people of the Glades to a handful of survivors.

At the end of the Seven Years' War in 1763, the Spanish missionaries and soldiers departed and left South Florida to native bands of Creek and Muskogee Creek people who moved here after the Creek War of 1813-1814. Collectively, they became known by non-natives as Seminoles. They provided a haven for escaped slaves. In 1830, Congress decreed that all natives be relocated west of the Mississippi.

A number of Seminoles refused to leave and declared war on the U.S. Army. The Seminole Wars of 1835-1842 and 1855-1859 inflicted heavy losses on both sides, finally ending with an 1859 truce. After the battles ended, the 150 Seminoles that remained hid deep in the cypress stands and saw grass prairies. Today, descendants of that small band, now recognized as the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida, still live within Everglades

We went to the visitor's center at the Everglades, which is outside the park
Entering the visitor's center

Entering the visitor's center


Florida Cougar statue at the visitor's center

Florida Cougar statue at the visitor's center


When I googled Florida Panthers, the first site that came up was for the ice hockey team. Opportunities to see the living Florida panther animals are uncommon. Even though there are panther crossing signs on the main park road, the only ones I saw were a stuffed one in the visitor's center of Big Cypress National Preserve, and this statue of one at the Coe Visitor's Center.

The Federally listed endangered panther needs large wilderness areas for its survival. The Florida panther is down to 30 to 50 individuals because of habitat loss, collisions with cars, inbreeding, and high levels of mercury in their prey. Most of the remaining panthers live in or near Big Cypress National Preserve and Everglades National Park.

Later in the trip, we went to an evening ranger lecture at the Long Pine Key campgrounds, where the ranger explained that these large, tawny cats are actually a subspecies of mountain lion. She showed us slides and gave us a quiz with 16 T/F questions which were designed to point out misconceptions about panthers. Because the first four were true, Bob thought all the questions were true, so he told me to put that. I thought some were false (like that a panther could leap 10 feet up into a tree with a calf in its jaws-I was wrong). He got 11 out of the 16 right, and I got 13 right.
Illustrated map at the visitor's center

Illustrated map at the visitor's center


Looking into the visitor's center

Looking into the visitor's center


and is new since Andrew I think. As we entered a lady pointed out a snake in the leaves near the entrance, and I took a photo.
x100_5973.JPGEverglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola)

Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola)


This was the Everglades Racer (Coluber constrictor paludicola) or Southern Black Racer The first picture shows only the front part of the snake - it was quite a bit longer than shows in this photo. More of it is in the second photo.

The range of the Everglades Racer is the southern end of Florida including the Florida Keys, but also a small area around Merritt Island and Cape Canaveral on the east coast of central Florida. The racers in the rest of Florida are considered to be a different subspecies, the Southern Black Racer. The differences between the two subspecies are very subtle (Everglades Racers aren't usually as dark, their chins are usually less white, and their eyes are usually yellowish rather than orangish or reddish), so it seems likely that this division might be artificial.
x100_5976.JPGEverglades racer

Everglades racer


Average adult size is 20-56 inches (50-142 cm). Adult color typically is slate gray, but many specimens are brownish-gray, bluish, or greenish. The chin and throat are white. The belly is grayish to uniform black. The body is slender and the scales are smooth, and there are 17 dorsal scale rows at midbody. The pupil is round. Juvenile color is gray with distinct reddish brown blotches fading into a solid-colored tail.

Range: In Florida, it is found in the Everglades region and throughout the southern peninsula and northern Florida keys. It is also found near Cape Canaveral in Brevard Co., FL. It is not found outside of Florida.

We saw a video tape at this visitor's center too. Then we entered the park (free with our Golden Age pass) and went to the Royal Palm center where the Anhinga Trail was. I remembered this trail from a visit in the late 60's , and particularly wanted to visit it.
Schedule of ranger tours

Schedule of ranger tours


Great blue heron

Great blue heron


We waited for the ranger talk there at 3:30 - they added an extra one in addition to the 10:30 one. While we waited we took pictures of the alligators, and a big iguana that someone dropped off there.
Alligator approaching

Alligator approaching

Alligator in Everglades National Park 2005

Alligator in Everglades National Park 2005

Anhinga Trail alligator

Anhinga Trail alligator


Alligator

Alligator


Non-native iguana

Non-native iguana

Cormorant

Cormorant

It is illegal to feed or harass alligators.  It is dangerous for you and harmful to them.  Maximum fine $500

It is illegal to feed or harass alligators. It is dangerous for you and harmful to them. Maximum fine $500


Everglades blackbird

Everglades blackbird


The Anhinga trail was terrific, but I didn't think that this particular ranger was especially good. We did see alligators, anhingas, coots, moorhens, wood storks, cormorants, egrets and herons
Double-crested cormorant

Double-crested cormorant


Up-close cormorants are quite colorful—with orange-yellow skin on their face and throat, striking aquamarine eyes that sparkle like jewels, and a mouth that is bright blue on the inside. The double-crest of the Double-crested Cormorant is only visible on adults during breeding season. They have less preen oil than other birds, so their feathers can get soaked rather than shedding water like a duck’s. This makes it easier for them to swim underwater.
Anhinga

Anhinga


Alligator lurking on the bank

Alligator lurking on the bank

Little blue heron

Little blue heron


The little blue herons are so aggressively BLUE that they look to me almost like bridesmaids shoes that have been dyed to match. It seems like they couldn't be naturally that color. I think they have purple heads, but the ID list says that is chestnut. In this picture the chesnut of the head is less visible. IME they are less common than the Tricolor Heron (and I find that I have been confusing them with the Tricolor Heron which of course has a white belly so it is pretty easy to tell them apart), but they are still pretty common.
Tricolored or Louisiana Heron

Tricolored or Louisiana Heron

Fish

Fish

Wood stork turns his back

Wood stork turns his back


Alligator

Alligator

Great blue heron

Great blue heron


The Great Blue Heron breeds throughout much of the US around water, but it migrates south in the winter. It is really hard to mistake this bird for any other bird - for one thing it's way bigger than any other bird. The Great Blue Heron sometimes is white and is called the Great White Heron. But usually the big white birds are Great Egrets. The difference is that a Great Egret has a yellow bill and black legs while a Great Blue Heron has a yellow bill and YELLOW legs. The Great White Herons also have a single white plume extending back from above eye which the Great Egret does not have.
Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron


Female anhinga

Female anhinga


The male and female anhinga have different plumage. The long tail accounts for the local name of "water turkey" and when it swims, the body may be completely under water so sometimes it is called the snake bird. They are often seen drying their feathers as they lack the protective oil on their feathers that most water birds have.
Male anhinga

Male anhinga


Common Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Small songbird - mangrove cuckoo?

Small songbird - mangrove cuckoo?


And also what I think was a mangrove cuckoo.

We dallied so long at the Royal Palms center, that it was quite late before we got to Flamingo. I was glad to read that the front desk was open 24 hours a day, in the peak (winter) season. (It was after 5 by now) and checked in to the lodge [which no longer exists because of subsequent hurricanes although a new one is scheduled to be build in 2019].

We stayed at the Lodge because we did not want to have to drive 70 miles back and forth each day. Our room had two double beds, telephones (they say there is voice mail but the connections are not good enough for email), air conditioning, private bath and maid service. All non-local calls (i.e. anything outside of the park) are charged a percentage in addition to a per call fee. So even if you use an 800# for internet, there will be a per call fee. It was 50 cents for a local call, and I got almost no service on my cell phone. I called our son to tell him that I would get him a ticket to the races for his birthday, and he couldn't hear me until I shouted "Happy Birthday".

We had dinner at the Visitor's Center restaurant. We had a waiter with an accent named Ivan. Bob got an appetizer and the soup of the day (beef noodle), and I got a cup of conch chowder and the beef stroganoff which was $9.95. The whole bill was $24.59 including the tip.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 13:03 Archived in USA Comments (3)

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