Saturday, November 24, 2012

Huguenot Memorial Park

I've wanted to check out Huguenot Memorial Park, near Jacksonville, for quite some time, so I was happy to see it was only a few miles from where we were camping last week. The park is known to be a popular destination for Gulls, Terns, Skimmers, and a variety of shorebirds. Since I hadn't been to the park before, I didn't know that high tide wasn't a very good time for a visit. Beach volleyball anyone?


This is the same net at low tide. Is it just me or is that quite a tide?


This park has an interesting layout. It is actually shaped a bit like a horseshoe and is surrounded by three different bodies of water. The top photo was taken from the Ft. George River inlet side. The below photo was taken from the St. Johns River side, near the inlet. The Atlantic Ocean can be found on the east side of the park.


Since it was high tide, we spent most of the time observing the birds in the St.Johns River.


There was a large group of young Pelicans near the shore. The rest of the birds seemed a little preoccupied.


There was quite a crowd of birds escorting this fishing vessel in.


From a distance, I saw this enormous group of Black Skimmers heading towards me. The photo shows only about half of the group.



We came back for another brief visit later in the day at low tide. The beach is open to traffic at this time. The only other people out on this day were kite surfers due to the weather. Tall dunes outline the "horseshoe" shape of the park. The off limits center between the dunes is a critical wildlife nesting area where hundreds of shorebirds and terns nest each year.


We saw another large group of Skimmers, lots of Herring Gulls, as well as Laughing & Ring-billed Gulls, Lesser Black-backed Gulls, Royal, Caspian, & Forster's Terns resting on the beach. There were Plovers and Sanderlings foraging in the surf.


 At the end of the beach on the Atlantic side, there is a large rock jetty with a beach area that also a popular resting place for the birds. I briefly peeked over the wall  and it appeared to be most of the same species as the other the group.


I look forward to coming back here soon!


22 comments:

  1. WOW.....as usual very good and nice pictures Tammy.

    Thanks for this nice post.

    Greetings and a nice weekend, Joop

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  2. Great shots, Tammy! I don't know much about tides, but that does seem awfully high. Those comparison shots are pretty cool! Love the skimmers in flight!

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  3. Great series Tammy, especially photo 3 this is really amazing.
    Have a nice weekend

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  4. Wicked shots Tammy . I do love that dune shot though !!

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  5. I certainly hope you will be back soon, I enjoy each of your posts! :)
    Amazing all these Skimmers around the incoming boat, but not a real surprise, considering all the fish they will surely manage to steel!!
    I love the young Pelican's landing, such a great shot!
    Well done again and enjoy your WE!

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  6. loved that young pelican! the boat being deluged by birds is pretty cool.

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  7. Hi Tammy !
    It'is low activity from my side in the last weeks, a bit busy with work and studies, but I wisit your place freqently to follow the nature in the State of sunshine. Nice pic of the pelicans landing :-)
    Have a nice weekend, Tammy !

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  8. Well, there's another place I'm going to have to visit soon! Great images. Love the shrimp boat shot! Yep, that's quite a tidal difference! Thank you for an informative post!

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  9. Birds everywhere, what a great sight to see and nicely captured as ever Tammy.

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  10. Woah! The birds came in bulk on this trip!

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  11. I was quite quite pleased to see one or two Skimmers Tammy, but that is just being plain greedy -;) absolutly great.
    Have a good one Gordon.

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  12. The numbers of Black Skimmers looked really impressive, as did amount of birds following the boats, really nice post :-)

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  13. that shot of the Pelican is just incredible..I am so jealous, we have some brown pelicans here but I have spent days and days trying to locate them, without any luck I might add! (everyone else has got them).

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  14. Hi Tammy!
    Nice to know you read French!!
    Enjoy your Sunday! ;-)

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  15. ¡Qué cantidad de aves Tammy!. Me gustan mucho las fotos, en especial la del barco rodeado de aves, los pelícanos y las dunas.
    Saludos!!

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  16. Looks like an awesome place to go birding. Love the pelicans and the skimmers in flight. Beautiful photos, Tammy!

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  17. Wow, looks like a wonderful place to photograph birds! I love the blowing sand image Tammy, it is wonderful.

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  18. What a beautiful place to stay, and all of them, Skimmers, Gulls etc etc. Superb photos Tammy.

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  19. Curiosas alineaciones las que forman las aves en vuelo, la toma del barco y la anterior repletas de aves parecen fotogramas de la película "los pájaros" de Hitchcock.

    Saludos.

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  20. I love the colour palette of dune pastels in this group of photos. The birds flying above the water in your third picture look like they are part of the bubbling surf :) Wonderful capture of the Pelican landing, but from the way it's coming in I presume there'll be quite a splash!

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  21. I felt in love with the pelican of the 4th image!! ;-) and I never saw skimmers like in the 8th.. the sceneries with the boat, the dunes.. makes me think that "neighbor grass is always greener". I envy you!!! :-)

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