Ding Darling NWR located on Sanibel Island, FL is an incredibly special mangrove swamp habitat preserved for the unique critters of the south. I originally went there because of the large gathering of Roseatte Spoonbills. This crazy looking bird’s color in spring is crazy pinkish-rose with a long bill that flattens and widens at the end. This specialized wading bird was once hunted to near extinction for its gorgeous plumes made a great comeback. Ding Darling for a long time was an easy and gorgeous place to enjoy this gorgeous bird. Ding Darling has been hit many times since I’ve been venturing to it by hurricanes. Its mangrove swamp habitat is adapted to take the hit. Yeah, there is some damage from the hurricanes but they come back. I’ve not been able to hear about and possible damage from Ian but I can’t wait until 2023 when I’m back down in FL and hope that access to Sanibel is restored so once again I can take in the jewel of the NWR system!
Roseatte Spoonbill captured by D3 / 600f4AFS w/TC-14eII