Palencia Salt Marsh

Before Dorian made a swing by off the coast of Florida, Regis and I went to the boardwalk over the Palencia salt marsh to check it out. In our last post, we posted some pictures of the clapper rails from that trip. Today I went back to the salt marsh late in the day while the sun was bathing the marsh grasses in a golden light. I took the following panoramic picture.

Palencia salt marsh during the “golden hour”.

I went back to my picture from before Dorian in order to compare the water levels. When we went to the marsh before Dorian came by, the water was very high, probably because of the early storm surge, as well as the king tides. The following picture was taken in the same general area as the panoramic picture above.

Palencia salt marsh prior to hurricane Dorian. This is high tide with a storm surge thrown in.

I got a picture of a green anole. (Technically a Carolina anole, Anolis carolinensis). They are native to the area but are being replaced by the Cuban brown anole (Anolis sagrei). I don’t see green anoles often so I’m glad this little guy let me take it’s picture. In my Florida Master Naturalist classes I learned that the green anoles are moving higher in the trees as the Cuban brown anoles take over. This is their attempt to survive the invasion and takeover of the brown anoles and it seems to be working right now. They are adapting as best they can.

Green anole. This anole may not look to green in this picture, but it is different than all the Cuban brown anoles we regularly see. When I saw it running across the boardwalk, I noticed the green color although it looks more brown here. The little anole posed briefly for me before running away.
Little blue heron (Egretta caerulea) in the Palencia salt marsh.
Tricolored heron (Egretta tricolor) in the Palencia salt marsh.
I think this is a Long-tailed Skipper (Urbanus proteus). If you think otherwise, please post a comment and correct me. I love that you can see it’s “tongue” in this shot.

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