38 degrees at 6:10 a.m. Begin civil twilight at 6:49 a.m., SUNRISE at 7:15 a.m., SUNSET at 5:35 p.m. The MOON will rise at 10:55 a.m., a waxing crescent 24% illuminated. HIGH TIDE was at 3:37 a.m., LOW will be at 10:07 a.m., HIGH again at 4:40 p.m., and LOW again at 10:02 p.m.

When I first went out this morning, I saw a beautiful sky full of dark reds and grays. All that has now faded to light grays with a hint of pink along the horizon. At 6:56 a.m. I saw the GREAT BLUE HERON standing sentinel at the entrance to the Cedar Cover Marina. It’s often there, a perfect silhouette in the early morning light. The OSPREY just called. It wasn’t on its perch when I walked across the Park Beach, so it must have just arrived.

At 7:08 a.m. I’m standing behind the Cedar Cove Townhouses. I can see the HERON from here and hear the OSPREY too. No activity in this area except for the birds flying by headed toward the Back Bayou. I spoke too soon — just noticed the BLACK SKIMMERS in the distance, and now they’re flying closer. At 7:13 a.m. there’s a pink glow near the horizon where the Sun is going to rise. Some of the BLACK SKIMMERS just landed right in front of me. More and more birds are flying by. A single heron or egret flew right in front of the rising Sun. I think the Sun is going to disappear as soon as it comes all the way up. It’s already half gone. All the BLACK SKIMMERS have now congregated in front of me, and at 7:17 the Sun has totally disappeared.

Got to the Dock Street Bridge at 7:30 a.m. Saw a KINGFISHER perched on one of the lights. I think I hear another one. Maybe there’s two of them hanging around this area? A biggish yellow-billed EGRET is perched on one of the pilings near the inner boat ramp. There was a second big white bird down in the water, but it flew off before I got a good look at it. I’m pretty sure the first one was a GREAT EGRET. Just noticed a GREAT BLUE HERON perched on the piling closest to me, the one that has a sign on it saying ‘IDLE SPEED ONLY.”

This afternoon I drove into Archer to shop at the big Publix. Stopped at the Ace Hardware in Bronson, which is at the second light where Route 24 crosses ALT 27.  I bought a white three pronged over-the-door hanger, some compact fluorescent bulbs, and a pair of Bluette gloves I noticed that there’s a package store across from the Ace. Just the other side of ALT 27 I saw a sign that said 8 MILES TO ARCHER. There’s a Sunoco with a quick stop between Bronson and Archer.