So, out of respect and admiration for these feathered friends and an interest in contributing to their protection, every year, around Christmas, birders worldwide (but mostly in the United States and Canada) gather locally to count birds. The Christmas Bird Count, organized by the National Audubon Society, happens from mid-December through January, and it’s known as possibly the longest-running citizen science activity in the nation. This year marks the 123rd year of the event.
The Lake Apopka North Shore is one of several St. Johns River Water Management District public lands inventoried during the Christmas Bird Count. Centrally located in the state and expansive, Lake Apopka offers wintering grounds for some species, a place to stopover for migratory species, and a permanent year-round home for other species. The bottom line, Lake Apopka is a hotspot for birding.
On a recent gray Thursday in December with a thunderstorm approaching, volunteers and District staff worked alongside each other, peering through binoculars and spotting scopes, counting as they traded notes on the differences between the black-bellied whistling ducks and the fulvous ducks, pointing out osprey and bald eagles.
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I know where two little wild birds were on Christmas Eve night. They found shelter from the cold and wind under our carport on top of our air conditioner. Bless their little hearts......I am reading about sleet in Brevard County. This makes me remember back to years ago in Jan. of 1977, when it snowed here in Apopka, and covered the top of my old Ford Maverick. My husband was bowling with his team at Winter Garden, and I was so excited, I called the bowling alley, to have him come to the service desk to tell him. ( didn't have cell phones back then). The snow stuck really great to my car. We got married in 1976, and my car got messed up with "just married" and other writings all over my car, that could still be seen, after it was washed. My husband's uncle said if we were going to do a DIY paint job to it, then be sure to use non- sanding primer. Well, who knew you STILL had to sand it? That car of mine, that we painted, was a pretty color, but had a really rough surface, and the snow really clung to the surface! Live and learn, LOL.
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