We started the afternoon with 2 scoops at Ciao Gelato, and then headed for the beach in Venice, FLORIDA. Ah, we have been to the Lido beach in Venice, ITALY, and it was delightful. Maybe it was just the day we were visiting each, but the pleasant beach in Venice, Florida certainly had the most cooperative birds and a larger quantity of seashells.
When we got home we compared the photo we took to images in our guidebook of juvenile gulls found in Florida. It most closely matched a 3rdyear herring gull except for the eye color (our bird had a dark eye and a mature herring gull’s eyes are yellow). Also, there is a black tip at end of the herring gull’s beak but the other color is yellow, and ours was pink. It took a bit of reading to find that the coloration in our photo is typical if the juvenile is a herring gull. So many gull identifications are challenging!
Distinguishing between a snowy egret and juvenile little blue heron can be a tricky as well. We realized we were trying to tell the difference totally by their appearance, but we learned that behavior is a better way to identify them. Juvenile little blue herons will be in shallow, grassy water and the head and beak will often be pointed down, waiting and watching for its prey.
We also saw the semipalmated plover on the Venice, Florida beach. So we started to wonder – just what does the word “semipalmated” mean? The definition says “having the toes joined only part way down with a web”
We didn’t leave the beach till our bag was almost full of shells, and we’d photographed almost all the bird species who came close by.
In our estimation, you can’t go wrong with a visit to either beach in Venice — Florida (US) or the Lido (Italy). Both beaches are well worth a visit.