by Nancy Dobias

It sure is unpredictable what the river or the wildlife might be doing at Myakka River State Park.   I've certainly learned that a + b is not always c. 

For instance:

a= the river is already up and trails are flooded   b= we've been having torrential downpours daily   c= main road floods

Wouldn't you expect the river to be over the road?  It's not.  It's close to the road. Where did all that water from those downpours go???

Another oddity is that ever-changing nature of the aquatic plants and their colors.  For those who favor lavender or light purple, this is the week for your color to be in.  The other colors are now a distant memory.

It's just remarkable how many color changes have occured in this field in the past few months.

What's not unusual is that there's always wildlife to see at the park.   You never know when you might come upon some critter that captures your interest.  Today I was going so slow looking for where the alligators might be resting that as I was driving along, a red-shouldered hawk passed me.  He swooped along at eye level beside my side window, and then he flew to an overhead branch in front of me.  There he awaited my admiring appreciation of how handsome he was.

At times I could see him listening to the sounds my camera was making.

But he must have been used to posing for the cameras.  He waited patiently for my camera lens to adjust to his every movement.  I believe he liked his profile shots the best.

If I were too slow in taking the pictures, he naturally gave me a look that said, "Can't we just hurry this along?  Exactly how long can I be expected to maintain the majestic haughty look???"

But when the camera started clicking again, he settled down and adjusted his poses accordingly.  Again, the side profile was his favorite.

How long he would stay was anyone's guess but since he didn't look in any hurry to leave, I continued clicking away.

If you're not doing anything, maybe you might take your camera and go out to the park.  Drive very slowly.  No doubt he'll swoop down to get your attention too. This hawk sure likes to pose!

By the way, I didn't see one alligator!  It was another one of those a + b does not always equal c....