Friday, May 2, 2014

A Visit to the Venice Rookery

The Venice Area Audubon Rookery is located in Venice, Florida, 60 miles north of Fort Myers and 22 miles south of Sarasota. Beautiful birds and their fascinating behavior can be observed here during the nesting months of December through May. Courting rituals, nest building, incubating eggs and raising of the young is typically witnessed throughout the daytime hours.

The rookery is on a small, unobtrusive island situated in the middle of a deep, modest pond. The water forms a barrier from predators, thus the island is a safe haven for birds to nest and tend to their young.

This past March, I was very fortunate to stop by the rookery. Black-crown Night Herons, Anhingas, Great Egrets, Little Blue Herons, Great Blue Herons and Glossy Ibis were among the birds seen at the rookery the day I visited. Though small, this sanctuary is a magical place to observe some exquisite birds.

A stunning Great Egret in full breeding plumage

A beautiful Great Egret family

Young downy Great Egrets

Testing out those wings

A good attempt at wing flapping

A male Anhinga fans his striking tail feathers

A female Anhinga watches over her gangly, fluffy young

Three long-necked, hungry youngsters beg for food

Diving for a meal from the female parent

"Hey Dad, I found the car keys!" ~ Feeding from the male Anhinga

A Great Blue Heron couple build a platform nest together

Two demanding juvenile Great Blue Herons implore the parent for a bite to eat


Stunning sights at the Venice Rookery ~ Great Egret

Posted by Julie Gidwitz


  1. Julie, that's a glorious set of images from your Rookery visit. Fabulous detail of the activity around the various nests.

  2. Wonderful photos!!!! Absolutely beautiful pictures of these nesting birds. I've never seen a Great Egret in full plumage!

  3. fantastic family portraits)))) superb!

    xoxo, Juliana | PJ’ Happies :) | PJ’ Ecoproject

  4. Excellent photography, I have visited the rookery several times and it is always a great place to get some great shots. Met Art Morris with a group at the Venice rookery, it made for a interesting day.

  5. !!! Gorgeous. Stunning shots, Julie. The little Egrets are amazing.