January 2012 Merritt Island NWR

This was my first visit to Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, which is located across the causeway from Titusville, Florida near the Kennedy Space Center.  It’s a great place for seeing ducks and other waterbirds.  I was first greeted by colorful Roseate spoonbills and Wood Storks feeding at the entrance to Black Point Wildlife Drive.

Roseate Spoonbill

Wood Stork

It was also my first sighting of three new ducks–the Northern Pintail, Blue-winged Teal and Northern Shoveler.

Northern Pintail

Northern Pintail (Taking Flight)

Northern Pintail (Flight)

Blue-Winged Teal

Blue -Winged Teal (Male and Female)

Northern Shoveler (Male)

Northern Shoveler (Female)

Also, among the many other waterbirds in the Refuge were Horned Grebe and Glossy Ibis.

Horned Grebe

Glossy Ibis

Lastly, the visit was sprinkled with a few land birds including Savannah Sparrows and the Florida Scrub-Jay.

Savannah Sparrow

Florida Scrub-Jay

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Phil Graham–Photo Naturalist

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