Blowing Rocks Preserve

Florida Wildlife Calendar: April 2021

Florida Nature Facts: Updated Daily

Featured Gallery of the Month: Red and Orange Wildflowers!

Latest Photos, Videos and Recordings

Upcoming Photography Workshops: Delayed Until Fall 2021

Frequently Asked Questions

Florida Wildlife Calendar: April

  • Indigo buntings, Mississippi kites, eastern kingbirds, grosbeaks, warblers, tanagers, orioles, thrashers and thrushes begin returning to North America.
  • Bobwhite quail nest now through September.
  • Migrant warblers concentrate on coasts after cold fronts.
  • Watch for hummingbirds feeding on blooms of columbine, buckeye, and others.
  • Wood storks in North Florida begin courtship and nesting.
  • Florida sandhill crane chicks get more conspicuous as they become old enough to begin foraging in open habitat.
  • Common loons head north from their Florida wintering grounds.
  • Most wild turkey hens are nesting.

  • Black bears begin moving after winter’s inactivity.
  • Long-tailed weasels, minks, and river otters will be born April through May.
  • Endangered gray bats return to Florida caves to raise young.
  • Manatees move up the Wakulla and St. Marks rivers, while in other parts of the state they are dispersing around Florida’s coastal waterways.
  • Bobcat kittens born this month and next.

  • Pine barrens treefrogs begin calling.
  • Larval mole salamanders mature and leave ponds.

The tiny oak toad found hunting by day in the tree shadows along the Myakka River in Sarasota County, Florida.

  • Most Florida snakes begin mating rituals.
  • Alligators begin moving about, seeking new territories and mates.
  • American crocodiles in Florida Bay begin laying eggs.
  • Florida softshell turtles lay eggs now through July.
  • Carolina anoles breed.
  • Loggerhead sea turtles begin to nest on Florida sandy beaches along the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico and the Straits of Florida.

  • Largemouth bass move into shallow water in Lake Talquin.
  • The cobia migration is in full swing in the Panhandle.
  • Stingrays move close to shore in Southwest Florida.
  • Jack crevalles and cobia move into coastal waters off the east coast.

  • Black swallowtail butterfly larvae begin feeding heavily on garden parsley.

  • Blooming wildflowers and pitcher plants blanket the wet savannahs of the Apalachicola National Forest.

  • Leafless beaked orchids begin to show off their fiery red blossoms all over undisturbed areas of Southwest Florida.
  • Pine-pink orchids begin growing in profusion in the Fakahatchee Strand and the Big Cypress National Preserve.
  • Spreading pogonia orchids begin to blossom in wondrous beauty in North Florida forests.

Latest Photos, Videos and Recordings

Florida Nature Facts #145 – Drone Flies

Florida Nature Facts #145 – Drone Flies

While bees are the current darlings of the invertebrate world, drone flies deserve a lot of credit as well. Not only do these cousins to mosquitoes, houseflies and horseflies live in almost complete obscurity in the public eye, these bee-mimicking insects play an...

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Florida Nature Facts #144 – Eastern Kingbird

Florida Nature Facts #144 – Eastern Kingbird

The Eastern kingbird mostly eats flying insects during the summer in North America and maintains a breeding territory that it defends vigorously against all other kingbirds. In the winter along the Amazon, however, it has a completely different lifestyle: it travels...

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Florida Nature Facts #143 – Dragonflies

Florida Nature Facts #143 – Dragonflies

Roughly 300 million years ago, dragonflies were the among first insects to take to the air. While modern dragonflies have wingspans of only two to five inches, fossilized dragonflies show that they once had wingspans of nearly two feet! VISIT THE DRAGONFLIES GALLERY...

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Florida Nature Facts #138 – Honeybees

If a honeybee keeps-waggle dancing in favor of an unpopular nesting site, other workers will head-butt her in an attempt to help the colony reach a consensus. VISIT THE INVERTEBRATES GALLERY MORE FLORIDA NATURE FACTS Florida Nature Facts is a series about interesting...

Florida Nature Facts #3 – The Ghost Orchid

Probably the most famous of our southern native orchids, the rare, leafless and mysterious ghost orchid of South Florida, Cuba and the Bahamas is at home in the dark, humid swamps where it regularly skips a few to up to a dozen or more years between flowering. It is...

Florida Nature Facts #144 – Eastern Kingbird

The Eastern kingbird mostly eats flying insects during the summer in North America and maintains a breeding territory that it defends vigorously against all other kingbirds. In the winter along the Amazon, however, it has a completely different lifestyle: it travels...

Florida Nature Facts #52 – Snakes

Snakes do not have a sternum. Floating ribs allow them to move side to side and swallow prey larger than their heads. MORE PHOTOS OF SNAKES MORE FLORIDA NATURE FACTS Florida Nature Facts is a series about interesting facts about the flora, fauna and places that make...

Florida Nature Facts #83 – Mangroves

Mangroves have the potential to reduce wave and wind energy by 50%-75%. MORE PHOTOS OF LANDSCAPES MORE FLORIDA NATURE FACTS Florida Nature Facts is a series about interesting facts about the flora, fauna and places that make Florida so amazing. Posts include nature...

Frequently Asked Questions

1 - Fine Art Prints, Canvases and Other Printing Options

I have an automated ordering system for fine art prints that not only makes ordering easier, but gives you more options. Choose luster (my personal favorite – it’s a cross between matte and glassy), old-fashioned glossy, classic black & white or even have your images printed on metallic paper or canvas. As always, all my printing is done on ultra-premium museum-quality, acid-free professional photography paper with commercial archival inks that won’t fade or “yellow” over time. I care enough about my work to have it only printed on the best materials possible.

Next to every image in our gallery there is an “Add To Cart” button that will give you all the options available for that image in a very user-friendly format, and will make ordering a breeze. There is even an option at checkout for custom cropping.

And as always, if you have specific questions that aren’t answered on this page, please contact me and I’ll be more than happy to talk to you over the phone or by email, or even walk you through the ordering process. When in doubt, contact me before ordering.

All final orders will be double-checked and verified personally by me to make sure every order looks absolutely perfect before going to print.

2 - Image Licensing, Stock Images & Image Licensing

I am pleased to announce that every single image on this website is available for instant download to your computer – no waiting involved! An ever-increasing amount of our business these days has been electronic image sales for bloggers, web-designers, news media and those who want the image in electronic format only. Many of these are publishers, editors, and other media specialists who do not require the printed image for their work or project.

We have a system in place for instant downloading of high-resolution (.TIFF) images for both personal use and commercial use. Just choose the size you want and it’s yours instantly, and we’ve tried to make this new system easy and simple to use and understand. There are two types of downloads available for you to use immediately. Read more about uses and downloading options.

Commercial Royalty-Free:

This type of download is for use in business or enterprise. This can include editorial work, blogging, sales material, non-profit, pamphlets, brochures, inclusion in a website, or any other commercial application. If you are not sure, ask yourself, “Am I planning on making money with this image or using for a business-related project?” If this is the case, then this is the right type of license needed. This does not include printing images for resale, print publication, or digital resale. If you do need an extended license for commercial work that requires use in mass printing, television, film, or other related commercial uses, contact us at your earliest convenience so we can discuss and we’ll get you a fast and reasonable quote.

Personal Use:

This type of download is for an individual using the image for personal use only. This includes classroom usage, school projects, personal prints, screen savers, usage for painters and artists to create derivatives that aren’t commercial in nature, etc. Essentially for uses that you aren’t trying to make money from our work. If you have any questions or extra information regarding uses please contact us and we’ll get you pointed in the right direction.

3 - More Information about Customized Fine Art Prints and Special Orders

Ordering prints from our galleries just got even easier! Now we are offering not only prints, papers, metal prints, acrylic and metal wall displays but a whole new range of customized frames, mats, and other accessories! Most prints are shipped within three business days and come with a no questions asked 30 day return policy. (I’ll discuss the details with you directly before you order – some of these materials may not be listed in the galleries, and I will take those orders personally – contact me for more information)

Through our partnership with Fine Art America we offer the most customizable and easy way of providing you with the very best professional prints for your office, home or gallery.

Custom frames and mattes – design it with amazing online tools! (Contact us so we can set it up personally with you)
Metal Prints (printed directly onto high quality aluminum)
Acrylic Prints (looks amazing with float mounts)
Stretched canvas prints
Museum wraps
Gallery wraps
Choose from over 230 high-end frames and 100 mats
Specialty fine art papers – including watercolor and luster!
Even greeting cards! Many more options, and we’re adding more every week!

4 - Usage Guidelines: Copyright Notice

We appreciate that you would like to use our photographs and/or images for your own projects. Please ask if you would like to use photographs for a blog or any other specific use. We offer exclusive rights to some of our photographs and it is important that you contact us, as this can then get us into legal troubles.

You may not copy images for paintings, drawings, or in any form or derivative without written permission. Your easiest option would be to purchase a “personal use” discounted download.

You may not sell or resell any photograph/image that Rich or Galina Leighton has taken or created. We have in our employ two competing copyright violation services searching out illegal usage of our work. Legal steps will be taken if misuse of our copyrighted material is detected.

If you want to use one of our images, you are required to purchase or license, which is easily and instantly available for every image through the shopping cart. Either contact us for your needs or use the automated pricing option for each image when viewing individual images (“Add to Cart” button). Every image you see in our online galleries is registered with the United States Copyright Office, and we do follow up on every single infringement case, all around the world. If you have any questions about any of this, please contact us.

You may not copy images for paintings, drawings, or in any form or derivative without permission.

We work really hard to create these images. Please respect our copyright. Thank you.


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