Date: 17 November 2015. Anhingas.
Anhingas are a type of water fowl.
Several of them live in the mangroves right behind Seaweed. They are
noisy. According to
Birds of North America they
are found primarily along the Gulf coast and eastern seaboard of the
United States. I like them, most of the time.
Anhinga hide in trees. Sometimes you'll see them
sitting on top of a channel marker with their wings spread out to
dry. The girls are a lighter shade of brown. The boys are much
If you look carefully there is a male anhinga in this
He is in the center of the mangroves looking to the
Mangroves are a type of tree that grows in the water.
Their roots protect and shelter smaller fish. There is always life
around mangroves. The manatees come too. A pair visited just a week
or so ago.
More about Vicky and Finnegan in an upcoming
Anhingas look very similar to cormorants. The way I
tell the difference is this: Anhingas have a sharp pointed beak much
like the capital letter A. Cormorants have a hooked beak that is
Anhinga beaks are pointed like the
capital letter A.
These water fowl are known by a
variety of nicknames. Keith Wolfe, an IT guy I know, wrote this:
While my mom and dad were living in Florida a few years back they
nicknamed the anhinga and called it a "snake bird". This was, they
said, because sometimes they float so low in the water all you can
see is their long curvy necks. From a distance, they look like a
snake standing vertically on the water.
The anhinga does resemble a snake
swimming through the water. The
Birds of North America book
has an illustration of the bird with just the head and neck out of
the water. Anhingas are not like ducks that float on the water.
When I was a Kidlet we called both
anhinga and cormorants water turkeys. I'm not quite sure why, but
there you have it.
The above photo shows a girl. She's got a lighter
chest and head than the male of the species. I think she's very
The anhinga colony does tend to be noisy.
Fortunately after making a ruckus they do quiet down at night. If
you want to know where they spend their nights take your dinghy
along a shoreline. Look for white in the lower branches of trees.
That's poop. Above that white guano at night you'll find the birds.
Where anhingas reside you can bet
nearby fishing is great.
That's it for today. Life is good on
Addendum. 21 November 2015. As I was going through
some photos today I spotted this one. Either a cormorant or
anhinga is flying across just a couple feet above the river. You
can see the webbed feet hanging. Pelicans in flight tuck their
feet up into their belly. J.
Have you another nickname for anhingas or cormorants?
And have you ever tamed one by feeding it fish?
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