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Our next in-person outing will be Saturday, February 26th at 8AM at the amazing Circle B Bar Reserve in Polk County. (Google Map Below)
Please join us as we explore the trails along the waterways of Circle B. This county water management area/education center is one of the premier birding locations in Florida. There are a number of species of birds that can be found here all year round but at this time of the year, the migratory birds are coming through so you never know what you will see.
There is also other non-bird wildlife such as alligators (Circle B is too famous for its gators), otters, bobcats, rabbits, insects, snakes, turtles, lizards, and who knows what else. There are a lot of people as well!
What to Expect (Maybe)
So, normally, there is a lot of walking but you can find a likely spot not too far from the parking lot and take a seat and see what comes your way OR walk the various trails to see what you can find. I usually do a combination of both. I am much more inclined to stop and take in everything these days. I have often stopped for a landscape shot, a common bird doing a behavior, or to just rehydrate and suddenly some unusual critter comes by or appears out of the water or does something spectacular! I try to always be ready to shoot one of my cameras. Oh yes, I carry 2 cameras, one with the 200-500mm lens and the other with a wide-angle lens. Sometimes that wide-angle is on my infrared converted camera.
Landscapes are possible here with my favorites being made when there are clouds in the sky.
Disclaimer: Since we are dealing with unknown weather and very unpredictable critters we cannot guarantee anything except a fun time with your fellow TBCC members, a little Circle B-oriented education, and MAYBE some awesome images!
What to Bring
I would recommend that you bring your longest lens and a teleconverter to get even more reach. Also, bring a wide-angle lens for landscape shots. If you have one of the zoom lenses that go from 28-300mm or more, that will work! If you just want to “see” the critters, bring a pair of binoculars.
Put on some sunblock, wear a hat, bring some water and bug spray in case it is warmer that morning. Bring a lightweight stool or chair if you want to stay at one spot. If it rains, we will wait it out and take a shorter walk.
Getting the Most Out of the Outing
While you are walking through Circle B, please be mindful and try to take in as much as you can. I usually visit this place by myself so I can be totally in the moment, not thinking about anything else but looking for something interesting to make an image of. We don’t have epic landscapes here but you can still approach what we do using the ideas and principles that Colleen Miniuk and some of our other presenters have enlightened us with.
The (Tentative) Schedule
Drive to the parking lots that are adjacent to the Education Center. We will meet at the pavilion near the PortaPotties at the edge of the center back parking lot at 8 AM. We will spend a few minutes talking about Circle B and reviewing what we will be doing. We will be spending a couple of hours as a group on this outing. If you want to stay longer or come earlier you are certainly welcome to do that!
Let’s Do This!
I hope to see many of you at this outing! We have to fit in as many outdoor outings as we can before it gets too hot and buggy!
If you have any questions, let me know. Please Email me at email@example.com
Map to Circle B Bar Reserve
Map of the Circle B Trails