June trip to the Rainbow River

Although we had rainy weather for part of it, we had a great time during our weekend on the Rainbow River. We stayed at the Rainbow Rivers Club. We went kayaking on one day and took a ride on a pontoon boat the other day. We saw an alligator while on the pontoon boat. Of course, there was food involved. And in Dunnellon, the Front Porch is always a definite stop for some pie.

May Monthly Dinner: Casita Taqueria

For our May monthly dinner, we enjoyed some Mexican food at Casita Taqueria on 66th Street in St. Petersburg. This is a new location for them that opened earlier this year. We enjoyed the outside seating and a chance to catch up with others from the group. As you can see from the menu, it is not your typical Mexican food you might find at other restaurants. Everyone had a great time.

May Monthly Meeting

Our May monthly meeting was held on Wednesday, May 15th, at 6:30 at
 Bill Jackson’s in Pinellas Park.

Great meeting tonight! Our speakers, Barb and Stephanie from the Clearwater Audubon Society brought a couple of guests for their talk: a peregrine falcon and a barn owl (pictures below).

Interested in seeing more or a particular bird in your neighborhood? They mentioned this database on the Audubon Society’s website:
https://www.audubon.org/native-plants Enter your zip code and a list of plants are displayed along with the types of birds those plants attract. Where can you buy those plants? Click on Buy Now, then Buy Local and scroll down. A list of nurseries that sells those plants is displayed.

Interested in learning more about birds? Check out this smartphone app from the National Audubon Society: https://www.audubon.org/app The app helps you ID birds. It includes audio clips and pictures. You can also track the birds that you see and post your photos.

Check out the Clearwater Audubon Society Facebook page at
https://www.facebook.com/groups/213954165290043/ to find their summer reading list of books about birds.

If you are interested in attending a bird walk, both the Clearwater Audubon Society and St. Petersburg Audubon Society maintain a list of programs and field trips on their websites. There is also this Pinellas County Birding Guide

There are many volunteer opportunities from standing on a beach near bird-nesting colonies to prevent people and dogs from disturbing them to volunteering at a facility to helping with a bird count. Learn more, including contact information, on this page:

Found an injured bird? If it is a bird of prey/raptor, call the Wild Raptor Sanctuary at 727-798-2385. If it is not a bird of prey such as a duck or a shorebird, call Birds in Helping Hands at 727-365-4592 (Shelley) or 904-703-2815 (Linda).

Thanks to Barb and Stephanie for sharing their time and knowledge!

Meeting attendees listen and learn about the barn owl that Stephanie is holding

Meeting attendees listen and learn about the barn owl that Stephanie is holding
Barb holds the peregrine falcon.
Barb holds the peregrine falcon.
A barn owl that is part of the educational program at the Wild Raptor Sanctuary in Clearwater.
This barn owl is part of the educational program at Wild Raptor Sanctuary.
Stephanie holds the barn owl as it spreads it wings.
Stephanie holds the barn owl as it spreads it wings.

Fishing at the Skyway Pier

Our trip in May was a fishing trip to the Skyway Pier. We met at about 9:00 on a Saturday morning. The cost was $4 a person and $4 a car. They had fishing poles available for rent, although most of us had our own. (You can call 727-865-0668 for current rental rates and more information about fishing at the pier.)

It was warm and it was more fishing than catching but it was a fun time. We hope to go fishing here again, perhaps when it is cooler.