© Larry Lynch
The aptly-named Roseate Spoonbill is one of Florida's most distinctive wading birds. Spoonbills feed on fish, crustaceans and aquatic insects with its unusual spatulate bill. Spoonbills nest at several sites throughout the state, but can be found almost at any coastal wetland around the peninsula. The Tampa Bay area is one of the best regions in the state to observe them, where approximately 15% of the population nests. They are regular, but uncommon, summer visitors to north Florida and the panhandle; mostly these are juvenile birds.
Recommended GFBWT sites:
- Cockroach Bay Aquatic Preserve
- E. G. Simmons Park
- Everglades National Park: Main Entrance and Shark Valley
- Fort De Soto Park
- J. N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge
- Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge
- Ritch Grissom Memorial Wetlands at Viera (Viera Wetlands)
- Stormwater Treatment Area 1 West
- Stormwater Treatment Area 5
- Upper Tampa Bay Park
For more information, including a range map and sound recording, visit The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's All About Birds website.
They nest mostly on islands in marine, brackish and freshwater habitats, including bays, mangroves, marshes, lakes and swamps.