Baptism by Fire. And More Drama from around the Salt Marsh.

I heard an osprey cry. And it didn’t come from the nest. I looked around and couldn’t believe my eyes. Right there in front of me, in the shade under a tree, was Lofty. The oldest of the three Osprey chicks. The day before he’d flown only from one side of the nest to the other.

Oldest osprey nestling practices flying Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty flies from one end of the nest to the other on Wednesday…

And now he was on the ground. Next to a busy road in the park. Being harassed by several black birds.

Osprey fledgling on the ground Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty on the ground right in front of me on Thursday…

Such a beautiful bird. But why was he on the ground? Was he injured? Was he resting after his first flight? Right at that moment Lofty looked at me, flapped his wings and flew up over the salt marsh. Tightly followed by his tormentors.

osprey fledgling chased by grackles Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty flies around the salt marsh chased by his harassers…

I’d call that baptism by fire. He flew several rounds around the salt marsh, even over the nest, and cried. He didn’t attempt to land. But Mama Sandy communicated with him. I guess she advised him to fly towards the ocean.

osprey fledgling in flight over the nest Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty flies over the nest and communicates with Sandy…

And that’s what he did. His harassers didn’t follow. He disappeared over the Gulf of Mexico. That was the last I saw of him.

osprey fledgling in flight Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty flies towards the ocean at the other end of the marsh…

Until several hours later. Looking with my binoculars from our terrace, I saw he was back in the nest with his two siblings, Aspire and little Sindile. Having dinner. All was good. That was last night.

dinner time in osprey family Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Dinner in the Osprey family…

This morning I was curious to see if he would be in the nest. But wasn’t prepared for what I came to witness.

It was a gorgeous morning, almost clear skies, light winds and low humidity. Walking from the beach towards the nest, I was greeted by a Roseate Spoonbill and a Snowy Egret, both enjoying the peace of the morning.

roseate spoonbill in the morning Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Roseate Spoonbill checks out the early visitor…
snowy egret in the morning Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
A Snowy Egret checks out her breakfast options…

Approaching the nest, I could see Mama Sandy there with two sleepy chicks, Aspire and Sindile. The breakfast was over.

 an osprey nestling Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Sindile lifts up her head…

Suddenly Lofty flew in. I later understood he came to tell Aspire it’s time to fly. They had a short dialogue. Mama Sandy just listened. Sindile closed her eyes.

dialogue between osprey chicks Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty tells Aspire it’s time to fly…
dialogue between osprey chicks Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Aspire gives her arguments…

Shortly thereafter Aspire flapped her wings vigorously (I’m assuming for now that Lofty is a boy and both Aspire and Sindile are girls…that might change later). But she didn’t fly. Lofty got beaten right on his head in the process, but took it in stride. He wanted to go flying with Aspire, and proceeded to demonstrate how easy it was. The rest is in this two and a half  minute video clip (Lofty is the one to the left, Aspire is in the middle and little Sindile on the right). It’s wobbly and noisy, but I think a few of you might still enjoy it.

Aprire was also attacked by several black birds, just like Lofty yesterday. She flew a few rounds around the marsh. And even considered landing in the nest, but changed her mind. Her baptism by fire. Finally she shook them off and flew with Lofty towards the bay.

osprey fledgling is attacked by a grackle Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
A Raven attacks Aspire right after she left the nest…
an osprey fledgling is harassed by back birds Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Aspire is chased by black birds… and flies over the nest.
two osprey fledglings fly together Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Lofty and Aspire fly together towards the bay…

You may wonder if Papa Stanley is still around providing for his family. You bet he is. One morning earlier this week, I was walking in the park just after sunrise. And there he was. Making a quick breakfast delivery. Came in, handed the fish over to Sandy, said hi to the chicks, and left.

male osprey brings a fish Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Papa Stanley brings in fish for breakfast…
Fish transport is complete by male osprey Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
The fish is now with Mama Sandy, Stanley says hi to the kids and flies away…

Very soon he’ll have one additional task. To teach the chicks how to fish. Lofty and Aspire will be coming back to the nest for food at least a couple more weeks, after which they’ll be good enough fliers to start learning how to fish for themselves. When they’re not successful, they’ll come back to the nest and wait for food brought in by both Sandy and Stanley.

osprey fledgling's first flight Sand key Park Clearwater Florida
Aspire in flight today…

The chicks typically follow the male on fishing trips to learn how to spot, evaluate the size and dive for the fish. While an Osprey can carry a fish twice their own weight (record in the bird world!) they may drown if they put their talons firmly on a fish that’s too heavy. So Stanley, and Sandy too, have one more important teaching role once the three chicks become confident fliers.

I hope to catch glimpses of them carrying a fish at some point, but for now all eyes will be on little Sindile. It looks to me she’ll take her time before she fledges. But I’ve been wrong before.

Have a wonderful weekend. Fly free like a bird.

Dim the Lights. Bring the Envelope. (Or Guest Post XVIII)

Hiff there! It’s me again, Bumble. Long time no see. Finally Mom allowed me to do a guest post on her blog.  And I hope it’s not only because she had to.  I came up with the prize for the best name proposals for the Osprey chicks. And it’s my book telling my story. She’s lucky I’m still here with my wits intact. At almost fifteen. It’s a respectable age, don’t you think?

new bumble laptop5 ed
Typing at Mom’s laptop…

Anyway, I’m happy to see you all again. How’ve you been? I hope life is smelling good. Like chicken. And that you’re getting enough exercise. I still walk Mom four times a day, and I’m on a new diet. I take that back. It’s actually not a diet. I’ve changed the way I eat. And that’s changed the way I feel. I’ve gotten a new leash on life. I heard my groomer say that to Mom the other day. I didn’t quite get it as I already have a leash. Actually two, if you count the short orange one from the hospital. But who cares, I feel fine.

Had to pose for Mom the other day...
Had to pose for Mom the other day…

You’re not curious to know the secret anti-aging trick that has allowed me to keep my good looks well into old age? No, you don’t need to click on anything, or buy anything. I’ll tell you right now for free: no dog treats! Only fresh baby carrots and apples between healthy meals. Preferably grilled chicken. Or poached salmon. So now you have it.

Otherwise it’s been busy around here. We spend a lot of time in the office. Mom and I. And we’re working hard. She talks on the phone or writes. When she’s not flying somewhere or exercising with the birds around the salt marsh. And I guard all her papers.

bumble in mom's office
Guarding Mom’s papers in the office…

One of my favorite pastimes is listening to the osprey chicks on our terrace. I’d say watching, but that’d be a lie. My eye sight is not that good anymore.

Listening to the osprey chicks...and guarding Mom's drink. Water, I think.
Listening to the osprey chicks…and guarding Mom’s drink. Water, I think.

And even Mom uses some kind of long glasses to watch them. But they are loud when they want food. And they seem to eat all the time. Like I did when I was younger. Always helping Mom in the kitchen. Picked up anything and everything she dropped. Under five seconds, with a good margin.

Sorry. Here I’m talking away when we need to get down to business. Dim the lights. We got many great proposals on names for the three osprey chicks. I’m sure you’re itching to know the winners…oh, I almost forgot! I asked mom why they needed names in the first place when we could just call them the big, middle and little chick. Mom said it wasn’t just for fun. A name with a good photo helps to recognize them, should they show up again after they leave the nest. Even if it’s much later, like after my next birthday. A satisfactory explanation, I thought. Much like my ID tag. So here we go. Dim the lights again.

bumble meditating in the dining room
Dim the lights!

And bring me the envelope. Mom? You were supposed to sit on the couch here. And hand me the envelope with your Excel sheet and the rationales we agreed on. I’ll need to paste them here.  Why do you always complicate things …oh, there you are! Thanks Mom…I have to bite this open. And now I press  “insert”. Ta Da!

osprey chick names

Lofty describes the personality of the big chick to the dot. He is imposing and a bit patronizing. Always wants to have the fish for himself and eat first. And be the first in the air. Val wins a book!

Aspire is a great name for the middle chick, who is well behaved but otherwise aspires to be like the big chick, sits next to him all the time and tries to come and eat with him. Kathy wins a book!

Sindile is a suitable name for the little chick. It means survivor (African origin). She has grown to a beautiful bird despite meager odds. And is slowly getting more assertive. Nancy Tex wins a book!

Bumble counting the books BG
Just checking…yes, we have enough books. The rest will go to the shop at the shelter.

There you go! And all the others ( Gallivanta, Jackie, Lorrie, Nancy, Nancy, and Susan) share the second place and get a card with all the chicks’ IDs. Once Mom has gotten lucky with a neat picture of them. That I approve of.  I’ve already volunteered to help her print it on the cards. Maybe she’ll allow me to sign them as well. I think my paw print looks quite good. Mom doesn’t always agree. Like that time I put my print on one of her mementos, a Zambian driver’s license.

Bumble selfie BG
Looks can be deceiving…I’m a good guard dog.

All winners please send your address to me at tinylessonsblog@aol.com. I promise to keep it safe. I’ll growl if someone tries to steal it. And I’m prepared to bite should tough measures be required. Looks can be deceiving. But you already know that, right?

Bumble Skydiving BG
An illustration from my book…I’m living fearlessly.

Thanks for playing and live fearlessly. Until next time. Love, Bumble

Sunday Extra! Breaking News. But Don’t Tell Mama Osprey.

I know. You’ve already clicked through this weeks Salt Marsh News. But a short weekend edition seems to be called for as there’s some late breaking news.

It was hot yesterday. On the better side of 90 degrees (F). In mid afternoon Mama Osprey left the nest. She flew a few rounds around the marsh checking for any dangers. Flying by the nest, she realized the chicks were moving about and watching her. She sounded a sharp two-part warning: Heads down!  And down they went like by magic.

osprey chicks watching mama fly around Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
The chicks are up and moving when Sandy has left the nest…
osprey nest Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
…and magically disappear on her command.

But that didn’t last long. As soon as Mama Sandy was out of sight, the oldest chick got up and flexed his wings. The middle chick next to him stayed down. The little chick lifted her head in amazement over the total disregard of Mama’s rules. The big brother flexed his wings vigorously. Faster and faster. And up in the air he went. Almost a whole foot.

osprey chick practices flying Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Flap! Flap! Flap! The big chick is in the air!

The middle chick next to him ducked further down. The youngest didn’t dare to watch. Big brother’s wobbly flight lasted only for a few seconds. And his landing was hazardous. An one foot operation.

oldest osprey chick lands Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
One foot down, the other almost on the middle chick…

But finally he gained his balance and got a firm footing. This reporter let out a sigh of relief.  Nobody hurt, nobody fell out of the nest. Weekend duty can be nerve-racking.

oldest osprey chick gains his footing Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
…an additional flap, and both feet land nicely in the nest.

After that show of emerging talent everybody was quiet. Until Sandy returned ten minutes later. She was wet, obviously from diving. But to the disappointment of the chicks, she didn’t bring a fish this time. She just needed a bath.

mama osprey returns from her dive Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Mama is coming back! Fish, fish, fish!
wet female osprey is back in the nest Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
You want fish? I needed a bath!

Mama was back. And nobody said a peep about the flying exercise that took place in her absence. And you won’t tell either, right?

Ps. If you have further suggestions on creative (and preferably gender neutral) names for the three chicks, please put them into your comments. Bumble will announce the winners in a special guest post he’s planned for Tuesday night. I think.

Timeout. Fresh Deliveries. And Beauty in the Salt Marsh.

Lunch time. Papa Osprey is approaching the nest with a big fish. It wriggles in the air. Excitement skyrockets at the nest. Mama Sandy and the oldest chick lead the refrain singers. Fish, fish, fish!

osprey mom and chick await for fish transport Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Fish! Fish! Fish!

Shortly thereafter Papa Stanley lands with the fish. It’s still fighting for its freedom. The handover to Sandy is going to be tricky. If the fish falls onto the ground it’ll be uneatable. A teachable moment for the first born.

male osprey brings in a fish Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
The fish is still struggling to get free…oldest chick looks on in amazement…

Sandy places her talons firmly on the fish. Stanley leaves immediately. Lunch delivery is complete.

male osprey leaves the nest Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Stanley leaves after lunch drop-off…

Sandy moves the fish several times. And finally parks it right next to the smallest chick. Like she always does.

female osprey struggles with a fish Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
When are we gonna eat, Mama?

The smallest chick is going to be fed first. But the big brother (yes, I think the oldest is a boy) doesn’t like that at all. He jumps onto his little sister’s (yes, I think it’s probably a girl) back and ruffles it up.

oldest osprey chick attacks the youngest chick Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Oldest chick is angry and ruffles the smallest chick…

That doesn’t go down well with Mama Sandy. She calmly cleans up the fish, but doesn’t allow the badly behaving chick to touch it. Instead, the little sister gets the finest piece of fish fillet I’ve seen around here. All for herself.

smalles osprey chick gets the biggest bite Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
The little sister get a big fillet of fish. And a  feather on her back is standing right up.

Then she feeds the middle chick (probably a boy, not quite sure yet). And takes a few bites herself. And finally, after about 40 minutes, the first born gets to eat whatever is left. Talk about teaching manners to your kids. And it looks like the timeout in “quiet corner” did the trick.

female osprey feeding the chicks Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
The middle chick gets fed next. Big brother still on timeout in the corner.

Today I managed to wake up early and went for a longish walk at around sunrise.

sunrise over the clearwater bay Florida
Pre-dawn on the bay side.

It was quiet and peaceful around the salt marsh. Only me and the birds.

sunrise in the salt mars Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Sunrise at the salt marsh.

And there was lots of beauty to go around. I spotted many birds in the midst of getting their breakfast. Or just doing their morning meditation.

blue heron at sunrise Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
A Great Blue Heron doing his morning meditation…at the far end of the salt marsh.
a roseate spoonbill Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
A Roseate Spoonbill says good morning…
snowy egret hunting at sunrise Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
A juvenile Snowy Egret getting breakfast…
tricolored heron hunting Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
A Tri-colored Heron hunting at sunrise…

I thought (so little I know) that the Osprey family had already eaten breakfast. They seemed relaxed, so maybe Sandy had gotten them an appetizer much earlier in the morning.

a female osprey with her chick Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Mama Sandy and the middle chick say good morning…

After saying hello to them I continued my walk. But suddenly sensed something was different. I looked back at the nest and saw Papa Stanley had arrived with a fish. Breakfast was in full swing in the Osprey household.

Osprey family breakfast Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Papa Stanley stays for a while after delivering breakfast…

And for once Stanley had decided he’d stay for a while with his family. He talked to his kids, scanned the environment and then left after a few minutes.

male osprey leaves after delivering breakfast Sand Key Park Clearwater Florida
Papa Stanley leaves for another fishing trip on the ocean…

He flew towards the ocean. Maybe finally getting his own breakfast. I took a short one minute video clip one morning while the chicks were eating, and added the Moorhen taking his bath this morning.  Be warned though, it’s truly clumsy as I’m definitely not a videographer. But I thought some of you might still enjoy seeing them “live”.  You’ll notice that the oldest chick is still last in the line. In the second take only his tail feathers are visible when the two others are fed by Sandy. But I have to say he took it with stride. Maybe he’s learned his lesson.

I also think we need to name the chicks soon. Looking forward to some creative suggestions! The winner(s) will receive a prize. Bumble suggested his book, and I agreed.

I walked home through the beach. It was still very quiet. And very cloudy, to Florida standards, of course.

BEACH AFTER SUNRISE EARLY MORNING Sand Key Clearwater Florida
Walking along the beach just after sunrise.

That’s all for this week from the salt marsh. I wish you all a wonderful weekend and Happy Memorial Day to friends in the US.  Be good now and travel safely.

Bird Sanctuary. A Hospital, Rehab Facility and Last Resort Home for Injured Birds.

One day last week I was driving south along the beach and decided to make a stop at a bird sanctuary. A Ranger at our park, who is also a bird rescuer, had told me about this bird hospital/rehabilitation center and “last resort” home for injured birds. She had recently taken a Barn Owl fledgling there from our park to be nursed back to health and rehabilitated until it could manage in the wild on its own.

Gulf beach at Indian Rocks, Florida

This sanctuary sits right on the beach in a beautiful setting with lots of tall trees and tropical plants.

a bird sanctuary

I was surprised to see many healthy birds also hanging around on the beach and in the gardens on the sanctuary grounds. I saw Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, Black Skimmers, Great Blue Herons, Black-crowned Night Herons, Brown Pelicans, and Black Vultures. Maybe they had friends or family living in this home, or maybe they just felt safe there with other birds.

a black skimmer on the beach, Indian Rocks , FloridaBlue Heron on the beach a brown pelican Floridasnowy egret Floridaa black-crowned night heron Floridaan old american black vulture Florida

The sanctuary has a bird hospital, a building where the injured “patients” brought here for care and rehabilitation are housed. Most of those birds would heal, be rehabilitated and then released back to the wild.  And therefore should not get too accustomed to people – no visits allowed. The birds are brought here with many kinds of injuries, most common being injuries to the wings, legs, bill or eyes. Many caused by close contact with human operated machines, such as boat propellers. If their injuries are so bad that they will not be able to manage in the wild although otherwise healed, they have a home here for life. Like these White Pelicans.

an injured white pelican two injured white pelicans play with a stick two white pelicans play in the pool Many of them seemed to be quite happy and playful despite their permanent injuries. Some were playing with sticks, others were swimming, and yet others were incubating eggs.

brown pelican mom sits on the eggs

The babies born here will be released back into the wild when they are ready to leave their parents, and have been trained to manage independently.

But I have to tell you the story of two Blue Jays. They share a little apartment here, just the two of them. They have no external injuries. But they had been raised by humans as pets, and then just left on their own – to die. They are now adults, but have no idea how to live in the wild. One of them (below) would meow like a cat.  I’m not kidding.

blue jay raised by humans and abandoned

They have been trained, but it’s clear they will never be able to live in the wild. They don’t know how to get food. They have also left the sanctuary twice by themselves, but returned “home” both times. I don’t want to put in print what I think of people who take wild baby birds as pets, and then just abandon them.

The majority of the permanent residents are seabirds: pelicans, gulls and different kinds of herons and egrets, but there are also a few owls and hawks. This beautiful Great Horned Owl has a wing injury and is no longer able to fly.

an injured great-horned owl

I’m happy there’s a place where injured birds from a quite wide area are taken care of, and that most of them are actually rehabilitated back into life in the wild.

Thanks for coming along and have a great day.

Empty Fridge. Life Lessons. And Romantic News from the Salt Marsh.

Mama Osprey’s fridge has been empty many times this week. The chicks are growing fast and have an endless appetite. Like teenagers usually do. When the meal time is over, all that’s left for Mama Sandy can be some shreds of a fish tail.

fame osprey feeding her chicks Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
A shred of a fish tail remains for Sandy’s lunch.

I’m no longer wondering why female ospreys lose 15% of their body weight during the nesting season. Sandy is a good example of a mom who always puts her chicks first. Male ospreys lose about 10% of their weight too. I guess the fish heads are not that filling. When the chicks were smaller, Stanley either waited in the nest until everyone had eaten or came back for the remaining tail. More recently he’s stopped waiting, and he doesn’t bother to come back to check for any leftovers. He knows there won’t be any.

male osprey leaves the nest Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Stanley leaves after his drop-off.

It’s been very hot this week, more like July-August temperatures. Luckily all three chicks are now big enough to be able to cool themselves. Sandy is still often protecting them from the hottest afternoon sun with her wings half-spread out. And the chicks are fluffing themselves up to let the sea breeze cool their skin.

Female osprey and an osprey chick Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Sandy and one of the chicks managing the heat last weekend.

The chicks are also learning the skill of watching for any dangers. The oldest one, in particular, often sits upright and helps Sandy to scan the skies. And s/he is also able to eat directly from the fish now, once the smaller siblings have been fed.

Female osprey with a chick Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Sandy checks out Tiny and one of the chicks scans the sky.

I haven’t spotted Papa Stanley making a fish transport since last Sunday. But that’s not so strange because his visits to the nest now are all about dropping off the fish, which only takes a few seconds.  I’m sure he’s still there. In any case Mama Sandy has started to fetch food too. It’s common for osprey moms go back to work as soon as the kids are big enough to be left alone for a while. There’s a need to complement what dad brings in.

female osprey returns to her chicks Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Sandy returns to the nest from one of her short outings. The oldest chick was in charge 🙂

This morning Sandy totally surprised me. And I think she surprised the chicks too.  I heard the youngest chick ask for fish. She stretched herself up, looked over to the shallow part of the marsh. And off she went. I was taking a picture of the chicks alone in the nest – and whoops, she was back! With a fish. It took maybe about 30 seconds for her to pick up the fish from the water. I have never seen her fishing right there. Needless to say I was impressed.  Here’s the sequence of Mama Sandy going to the neighborhood seven eleven.

female osprey with osprey chicks Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Sandy stretches up and watches intently…
female osprey with chicks Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Then she just flies out … down into the marsh.
osprey chicks waiting for female osprey to return Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
The two oldest ones watch her, but the youngest one is just asking for fish.
female osprey is back with a fish Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
Sandy is back with a fish…
female osprey got a large fish Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
…and it’s a fairly big one.

Sandy started feeding them right away. Less than two hours later I checked on them from home with my binoculars and they were eating again. Stanley must have brought another fish right after they finished the first one 🙂

Otherwise everything is good around the salt marsh. The Red-winged Blackbird has made himself home and is busy singing his songs in one tree or another. I love to see him, but wouldn’t pay to download his songs.

redwinged blackbird 3 UD6
A Red-winged Blackbird sings to his heart’s delight.

The Nanday Parakeet couple still lives happily in their condo apartment. The balcony and the patio perch come to good use in the heat.

nanday parakeet in her nest Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
A Nanday Parakeet on her balcony (I’m guessing it’s the female)…
nanday parakeet Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
…and her hubby on their perch patio.

The Red-bellied Woodpecker is still there, but no longer alone.  He’s gotten hitched! It was impossible to persuade both of them to sit together and pose for the camera. I had to merge two pictures to show you how they play.

Red-bellied Woodpecker couple Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
The Red-bellied Woodpecker couple close to their home.

And the Moorhen chicks continue to grow. I’ve spotted them on most of my walks this week exploring their surroundings with mom and dad.

A Moorhen chick Sand Key park Clearwater Florida
One of the Moorhen chicks came out of the grass to explore a bit further.

That’s all from the Salt Marsh News for this week. I hope you’re learning good life lessons too, and that your week is going great.

WPC Forces of Nature: The Many Faces of Storms (9 Images)

This weeks DP Photo Challenge is “Forces of Nature”. Living close to the ocean and the intracoastal waters, I’ve snapped a few pictures of storms over the last few years. I find it fascinating how the light changes with the atmospherics of the storms. Here are a few images I’ve selected for this challenge.

storm over the bay WPC
The skies darken before the storm, but light is always there behind the clouds…
bay storm skies WPC
…even when “storm dogs” run wild in the skies…
…a window of light suddenly opens in the wall of rain over the ocean…
storm approaching the beach WPC
… and light acquires a mysterious quality when a storm approaches from the ocean…
stormy ocean waves WPC
..at other times there’s plenty of light, but the ocean is so angry it’s difficult to stand upright…
...and sometimes it rain so hard you can't go out to shoot anything at all...
…and many times there’s practically no light …and you can’t go out to shoot anything at all…
rainbow WPC
Then a rainbow shows up in the sky after the storm…
...and the birds get a rainwater bath on the flooded beach.
…and the birds get a bath in a newly formed “lake” on the flooded beach. The storm is over.

You can find other responses to the challenge here. Have a wonderful week. May your skies be sunny and bright.