I was greeted by a few treats though. The swallow swarm was back, bigger and better than ever and they added to their antics and my joy by swooping down to drink from the pond a hundred at a time "on the wing", causing only a slight ripple in top of the water.
Then, there was a robin, a soaring eagle, a common dove (not so common around here) and likely the best of all: 6 soaring wood storks (picture shown, which you can see enlarged by clicking on it), There may have been more up there, but 6 was all that fit into the photo frame ;)
On Saturday, I met a new "life lister": Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus). I glanced out the window and saw red in the oak. Not exactly unusual, the cardinals often hang out in there, but this was close to the trunk. As I studied it, I thought it was a Downy Woodpecker, a species I was blessed with in huge numbers while living in New York, but that I have yet to add to my Florida life list. I crept outside and got out my field glasses for a closer look. WOW, kinda big! As I angled the camera to try and catch a photo (s)he took off up into one of the tall pines.
I studied it through the field glasses some more and made unsuccessful attempts to get a photo. I realized it was indeed too large to be the diminutive downy so I headed inside to grab my field guide. After thumbing through, I decided that Hairy Woodpecker seemed a good match and then I headed in to the computer to confirm. YEP! CHECK!