Lots to see!!! Come visit us in the Honey Island Swamp!
June is almost here, and there are so many amazing things going on in the swamp, but the most prominent feature is that the alligators are out in full force!! I have been spending a lot of time on the river lately, and I get the chance to see these guys in their habitat. Being out there among them, makes all the information I have been reading about the allusive alligator come alive for me. My latest book to devour is American Alligator by Kelby Ouchley, and I think it is one the best alligator books I have ever read. Kelby is a retired biologist who has spent years working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service managing alligators and their habitats. If you have had a chance to spend some time with us on a swamp tour and you just cannot get enough of these fabulous creatures, I recommend this book whole heartedly!! I learned so much about the differences in captive and wild alligators. Did you know that captive alligators have a broader snout than their wild kin? This lends credence to the idea that diet can have an impact on snout shape. I loved reading all the stuff that ole guys who have been out on these waterways all their lives already know such as the alligator only has webbed feet in the back. The front feet have five toes and are not webbed. I also loved reading more about the osteoderms found on the alligator's back and their function as a heat exchanger and cooliant for the alligator. None of this is news to our captains or the really interesting folks we meet out here that have made these waters their life, but to me...a fairly recent and absolutely besotted transplant, it is all just the most interesting and entertaining information.
I have also been seeing a lot of birds!!! I went out with my favorite captain not long ago and saw the sky full of great egrets. I will never grow tired of seeing all the vastly different types of birds we have out here in the swamp. There seems to be an abundance of young barred owls this year who have no desire to sleep all day. These guys are out and about and making lots of noise! Pileated woodpeckers are making their presence know also, and then there are my favorite birds... the whistling ducks!!! They are just cool. Yep, that's it. They are just absolutely cool birds!! It is truly just a wonderful time to be here in the swamp, and we hope to see a lot of our old friends coming back for their regular sojourn with us as well as many new faces wanting to experience the beauty of nature in the swamp.
Thanks for giving us the chance to do what we love!!! SWAMP TOURS ROCK!!!!