Wally’s Walk in a Central Florida Marsh

When a thought bubble labeled “good men you know” floats above my head, I fill it up quick as you please with several names: Buck, Wally Jones (my older brother), Charlie Haas (my brother-in-law), Richard Westmark (my step-son),  Richard Gibson (my step-son-in-law), Sid Jones (my nephew), and Harold Swilley. There are many others in my life, but these are the “A” list that fill up that first thought bubble.

One of them, my brother Wally, got a new camera recently, and has begun to photograph subjects of greatest interest to him: his family and nature. Turns out he’s a gifted photographer, and has been kind enough to let me share a recent photo essay from a walk in a marsh near his home in central Florida. Wally’s photos were taken on June 15. There are some birds in this series that I had never heard of or seen before. How about you?

So, get ready for a heavy dose of natural splendor, Florida style. Just sit back and enjoy these stunning photos. Accompanying text and photos below are courtesy of Wallace Jones.

“I took a stroll yesterday morning through a marshy area just south of town. The sun had just broken the horizon, not a sign of a cloud was in the bright blue sky and the air was fresh and clean.”

“As I started down a grassy path, the sentinel of the swamp (Wood Stork) looked down at me from his perch atop a dead tree. I was reminded of Dante’s Inferno and wondered if I was about to cross the River Styx. Instead of abandoning all hope, I trudged onward.”
“The marsh was waking up. Tall trees decorated with Roseate Spoonbills, Wood Storks and White Ibises came to life with stretching, fluttering and general clucking.”
“A Purple Gallinule with a mouth full of nesting material darted in and out of the greenery, perhaps to throw off any would-be predator from finding her nest.”
“Florida Sandhill Cranes think this is a great place to raise kids. Momma explains to Junior that it’s time for him to start feeding himself. Right.”
Black-bellied Whistling Duck
Cattle Egret
Tricolored Heron
Snowy Egret
Limpkin
Common Moorhen
Dragonfly
“The sun is rising higher and the dew is burning off the Swamp Hibiscus. It’s June in Florida. Hot. Steamy. Time for all creatures to find water, shade and be thankful we have so much for which to be thankful.”

13 thoughts on “Wally’s Walk in a Central Florida Marsh

  1. These are absolutely wonderful and you’re right he is gifted. I had only ever seen a couple of those birds and in person maybe only the Egret. Many thanks (to you both) for letting us travel along.

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    1. Yes, and especially to capture those up-close, in nature shots. I appreciate Wally saying it was okay. He’s prone to hide his light under a bushel!

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  2. I can see that an eye for framing natures beauty through the lens of a camera runs in the family. I especially like the reflection pics. Thanks to you both for sharing.

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    1. Thanks for visiting, Bernie. Hope you’ll visit again soon. Check out my Blogroll for some great reading and photography, too. I think you would especially like Gullible’s Travels, written by my friend Jeanne Follett, who lives in Moose Pass, Alaska. She’s an inveterate traveller, volunteer picker-up of litter, and a superb writer and photographer who chronicles life in the stunning state of Alaska which she knows so well. She’s a great armchair travel guide, too, going to places I would love to see, from China and Tibet, to Australia, Europe and beyond. She just got back from Yosemite. And for Texas Hill Country beauty and more armchair travels and great nature photography, check out Kathleen Scott’s Hill Country Mysteries. Good stuff!

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  3. I spend many weeks a year photographing in Florida Beth and absolutely LOVED these beautiful images your brother made and also the great blog you write. It’s always a joy to visit here.

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    1. Many thanks, Rick, and especially meaningful coming from such a fine professional as yourself. Wally took these pictures near Lakeland, in a marshy area not too far from Lake Kissimmee. I think my favorite for just pure beauty is the humble Cattle Egret. So many bridges built among people of good will and creativity here in this unusual world called the Internet. Ugliness and cruelty outmatched (at least on most days) by an evergrowing web of interconnected light.

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