I thought I would post a quick update on my trip to Florida. Again, it was mostly a birding trip, however where possible I did try to see mammals. The early morning wake ups though, and the time spent in urban areas, pretty much limited the number of mammals I could see. Still I recorded the following species:
Nine-banded Armadillo: one young individual feeding at Oscar Scherer State Park: very tame
West Indian Manatee: multiple animals provided excellent views at the Flamingo Marina, sometimes just 5 feet off the dock. Also seen at the Big Bend Powerplant Manatee viewing area in Tampa, although these were more distant (Great views of Bonnethead sharks here however). A lifer
Eastern Gray Squirrel: common in urban/suburban areas
Marsh Rabbit: Good views at Green Cay Wetlands, early morning. Look for this species in the grassy berms; A lifer
Common Raccoon?: eyeshine while nightcruising Everglade from Flamingo seems to match this species
White-tailed Deer: numerous individuals at Myakka River State Park
Inshore Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin: one near the Tampa Convention center.
Spent 2+ hours road cruising the Everglades, but didn’t observe much other than the possible raccoon and good lucks at Whippoorwill. Maybe just didn’t put enough time in, although the super windy conditions might have also played a role.
On an unrelated note, Fiona Reid is offering a Batwatch trip to the Big Bend area this summer for a week of mistnetting. Ghost-faced Bat will be a target. It’s a bit outside my budget, but other people here might be interested