Living With The Birds

Recently I have posted photos of sand hill cranes parking themselves under a live oak tree in front of my home.  Most of you know I live in a semi-rural area of the Florida gulf coast.  My house is of sturdy concrete block and located some dozen miles from the beach so I don’t worry about hurricane storm surge.  It helps that we are at an elevation of 69 feet above sea level which is practically a mountaintop in flat Florida.

There has been some recent development around here during the last several years.  We now have a modern grocery. two gas stations, a Dunkin Donuts, a  UPS and a liquor store close by.  The road to the coast has been widened.    My eldest daughter still thinks I live in the boonies.

Looking at yesterday’s photos you would think this was a routine development of modest homes inhabited by mostly retirees.  You would be right but we are only a single street of  modest homes; most of the homes in the surrounding area are much grander than ours and house younger families with school age children.

Why would cranes hang out here?

You need to see behind my house at the great open space.  In the photo above you see a crane staring at me through the screens.  Across the road is a very comfortable home once owned by a Swiss family.  Each winter I would hear the children speaking German around the pool.  That house is the last house on that side of the road – it borders a great swamp to its right out of the view of the camera.  It has a “sea wall” separating it from the water, though I have been here 14 years and never seen the water approach it.

Now take a look at Toritto’s morning walk and you will know why the cranes live here – along with herons, hawks, turtles, armadillos, turkey vultures, assorted song birds  and an alligator.


Across the road behind my house.



See the crane?







The swamp is controlled by our homeowners association; no boating, fishing or hunting of any sort is allowed.   As a matter of full disclosure, I live in a gated community but our gates are open to the public each and every day and only close at sundown.

And if you think it takes a lot of money to live here you would be quite wrong.

It doesn’t.  You need to be lucky enough to find an available house for sale.

Mine was the last one built here – fourteen years ago.


About toritto

I was born during year four of the reign of Emperor Tiberius Claudius on the outskirts of the empire in Brooklyn. I married my high school sweetheart, the girl I took to the prom and we were together for forty years until her passing in 2004. We had four kids together and buried two together. I had a successful career in Corporate America (never got rich but made a living) and traveled the world. I am currently retired in the Tampa Bay metro area and live alone. One of my daughters is close by and one within a morning’s drive. They call their pops everyday. I try to write poetry (not very well), and about family. Occasionally I will try a historical piece relating to politics. :-)
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5 Responses to Living With The Birds

  1. beetleypete says:

    That sounds like a sweet spot to live in, Frank, even with an alligator! But I am guessing the proximity of the swamp means something else too. Mosquitoes!
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thankfully parts of Florida are still a natural wonderland of wildlife and though we have intruded upon them they seem to tolerate us… the Cranes here are so lovely and usually in families of three. They are accustomed to us and will come up to us, though they still remain somewhat leery which is a good thing for them. Lovely photos.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Nice. Such beautiful pictures. 😎


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