Ed has always wanted to photograph a Painted Bunting, so he was really excited when he heard that they hung around the Merritt Island NWF information center. Unfortunately, we didn't see one when we stopped at the center two days ago. Deciding to give it one more chance before we left the area we drove over to the information center and guess what we saw.

A Common Yellowthroat!!!!

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and Painted Buntings, a male, a female and a juvenile.

The bridge that links the two sides of the NWR together is out of commission as it is being repaired so we drove the long way around. Stopping at a Manatee viewing area we saw at least 6 manatee feeding.

No stunning close ups but Ed did get 3 noses out of the water at the same time.

We also saw this dolphin feeding.

Next stop St. Augustine Beach.

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Ed finally got a chance to fly his kite. Unfortunately, the wind didn't co-operate so he only flew the kite for about 15 minutes. It has been a few years, so he was happy he remembered how to put the kite together and how to fly it. We need to find a big open deserted beach at home so we don't have to go south to fly the kite.

Walking along the beach we came across a flock of birds. If we got a little too close they walked a few steps away but didn't seem concerned we were there.

The main reason for stopping at St. Augustine Beach on the way home was to have dinner at Sunset Grill. When we spent a month in St. Augustine 3 years ago we ate at the grill several times and really enjoyed it. I'm happy to report that the food is still as good as it was 3 years ago. After dinner we drove to downtown St. Augustine, about a 10 minute drive.

The old city gates.

The moon over the fort.

Didn't realize we were in front of a light till we saw the shadows.

A view of the bridge --- caught the light from the lighthouse.