Three-Years Ago (25-November-2014) — Florida

Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge: Black Point Wildlife Drive

My only view of an alligator on that day was just as I was leaving. All that was visible was an eye and the tip of its snout. It was starting to rain, so I only got one loop on the wildlife drive. Some birds, but not as many as I have seen on previous visits to the National Wildlife Refuge.

Alligator Eyes. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 2800, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)
Alligator Eyes. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 2800, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)


Tuesday (25-November-2014) — Florida

Florida Road Trip 2014: Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge

I only had a few hours through drive Black Point Wildlife drive in Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge before being hit by really heavy rain. There were not as many birds as I have seen before. I did see the top of the head and eyes of one alligator.

White Ibis, Great Egret, and Snowy Egret. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 500, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)
White Ibis, Great Egret, and Snowy Egret. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 500, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)
Alligator Eyes. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 2800, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)
Alligator Eyes. Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D4 camera and 500 mm f/4 VR telephoto lens (ISO 2800, 500 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)n

21-December-2011

Black Point Wildlife Drive, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge.

After arriving at my hotel in Cocoa Beach I drove to Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge. It took about 40 minutes to get to the headquarters to buy a new America the Beautiful pass. They were going to give it to me for the senior rate of $10, but to be ethical I paid the full price. I then went for one round through the 7 mile, one-way Black Point Wildlife drive before sundown. They close the road at sunset. The following are some images I took along the road.

Great Egret Hunting.  Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/800 sec). (David J Mathre)
Great Egret Hunting. Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/800 sec). (David J Mathre)

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Late Afternoon Great Blue Heron Hunting.  Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 330 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec). (David J Mathre)
Late Afternoon Great Blue Heron Hunting. Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 330 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec). (David J Mathre)

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Late Afternoon Great Blue Heron Hunting.  Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 200 mm, f/4, 1/400 sec). (David J Mathre)
Late Afternoon Great Blue Heron Hunting. Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 200 mm, f/4, 1/400 sec). (David J Mathre)

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Great Blue Heron Swallowing a Frog.  Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1800, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec). (David J Mathre)
Great Blue Heron Swallowing a Frog. Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1800, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec). (David J Mathre)

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Great Blue Heron Doing the Chicken Dance.  Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Preserve, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1800, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec). (David J Mathre)
Great Blue Heron Doing the Chicken Dance. Black Point Wildlife Road, Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 1800, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec). (David J Mathre)

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Great Blue Heron. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 2000, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)
Great Blue Heron. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 2000, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)

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Lone Great Egret Hunting on a Small Island. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)
Lone Great Egret Hunting on a Small Island. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/500 sec) (David J Mathre)

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Lone Wood Stork. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/640 sec) (David J Mathre)
Lone Wood Stork. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/640 sec) (David J Mathre)

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Alligator with Reflected Eye. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 2200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)
Alligator with Reflected Eye. On Black Point Wildlife Drive in iMerritt Island Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 2200, 400 mm, f/4, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)

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Sunset from Merritt Island, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 800, 200 mm, f/22, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)
Sunset from Merritt Island, Florida. Image taken with a Nikon D3s and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 800, 200 mm, f/22, 1/320 sec) (David J Mathre)