April 25-30, 2017 St. Augustine
While I came to St. Augustine primarily for Photofest, I did get out to shoot around town a bit.
I picked up an annual Photographer's pass at the Alligator Farm. If you've never been, in addition to the alligators and other animals, it is a world famous rookery for wading birds. The alligators ward off or eat the predators like snakes and raccoons that would normally rob the nests, so thousands of birds nest here each year. There are several species of herons, egrets, wood storks and roseate spoonbills, just to name a few.
Last year I was there in early March and again in early April. At this time of the year there is a lot of nest building activity, and many opportunities for bird in flight (BIF) photography.
Being there at the end of April this year, I got fewer shots of birds in flight, but there were a lot of great egret and wood stork chicks in nests, and a lot of heron and spoonbills sitting on eggs.
One place I had passed by, but never visited was Flagler College. The college is named for Henry Morrison Flagler, an industrialist, railroad pioneer, and co-founder of Standard Oil. In 1888, Flagler built the Hotel Ponce de León as a luxury resort. It is a spectacular example of Spanish Renaissance architecture. Around 1961, the resort became the home of Flagler College. The main lobby is surrounded by archways, topped by an elaborate dome and decorated with murals.
So on Saturday morning I met a friend from Chattanooga who was also down for Photofest, at the Bridge of Lions for sunrise, and then headed over to Flagler College for a few shots inside and out.