Sunset Cruise on Rookery Bay, Part 2

Sunset Cruise on Rookery Bay, Southwest Florida
Saturday 26 April 2008

Part 2: Into The Rookery

Dr. Jerry Jackson


Dr. Jerry Jackson is a professor at Florida Gulf Coast University. He’s kindly and energetic, and demonstrates a keen, bubbling-over enthusiasm for his subject, namely – birds! Dr. Jackson doesn’t always do this eco-tour; I have the impression it was a special treat for all us public radio geeks who listen to his radio spot on WGCU every morning.

Dr. Jackson displays a bird’s skull


What’s a Rookery?

He started off by telling us about the word “rookery”, which he points out has “rook” at it’s root, which is a European crow. Indeed, dictionary.com tells us that this is so, and also points out that “rook” can also mean “to swindle”. Perhaps the verb arises from a crow’s proptensity to swipe things. So if a crow is a “rook”, then a crow’s nesting place is a “rookery”, a term which came to be more broadly applied to places where any types of birds have their colonies.

The Importance of Mangroves

A little mangrove island with some critters hanging out

Dr. Jackson apparently loves words nearly as much as he loves birds, for he went on to expound upon the word “mangrove, remarking that the roots look like the legs and feet of a “man”, and that they grow in a “grove” or tight grouping.

A display of mangrove roots

A tricolor heron rests in the tangle of the mangrove roots

An egret wades for his dinner among the mangrove roots

NEXT TIME: More about the mangrove islands and their inhabitants.

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  20 comments for “Sunset Cruise on Rookery Bay, Part 2

  1. Indrani
    April 29, 2008 at 2:29 am

    Hey this is interesting and informative. I love such posts. Do visit my ‘i Share’ if you get time. recently visited the migratory birds at Kaggaladu near Bangalore.

    Loved the pictures a lot.

  2. MariBy
    April 29, 2008 at 4:57 am

    Good stuff Tink! Waiting for more!

  3. jams o donnell
    April 29, 2008 at 7:14 am

    What a fascinating post. The word rookery was also used here as a name for London’s worst and most violent slums. They were pulled down in the 19th Century

  4. Snap Catch
    April 29, 2008 at 7:25 am

    wow! fantastic shots! are you a professional photographer? thasks for dropping by…

  5. Tink *~*~*
    April 29, 2008 at 7:28 am

    Nope, not a professional. Not by a long shot! I did use Picnik to polish some of the photos a bit.

  6. ChrisC and JonJ
    April 29, 2008 at 7:59 am

    I think I might be learning something here.

  7. Napaboaniya
    April 29, 2008 at 8:52 am

    Nice and educational :)

  8. Debbie
    April 29, 2008 at 9:21 am

    This is great! I too am getting an education.

  9. Sue
    April 29, 2008 at 9:28 am

    Coolio! I did not know what a rookery was before. Cheers!

  10. Snowbird
    April 29, 2008 at 9:29 am

    Very interesting and great photos. We took the Tarpon Bay Explorers boat trip which sounds much like this trip. Speaking of Crows–did you know that a flock/group of Crows is called a murder? Kind of goes along with rook, huh?

  11. Lilli & Nevada
    April 29, 2008 at 10:02 am

    Wow that is very interesting, Learn something new and the meaning of Rook

  12. Melanie
    April 29, 2008 at 10:09 am

    Thay looks wonderful! Some amazing photos!!

    Our Happy Happenings
    Livin’ With Me

  13. Chris
    April 29, 2008 at 10:23 am

    We love birds out here but all ours are the desert kind. Its nice to see some around the water :)

  14. the teach
    April 29, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Very impressive, Tink! Thanks for all the great pix! :D

  15. catsynth
    April 29, 2008 at 12:00 pm

    Thanks for sharing this post on the mangroves. They are an interesting an important environment.

    You would probably enjoy our recent post on wild cats.

  16. SandyCarlson
    April 29, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    Marvelous post, Tink. Thanks. Rookery is a wonderful word. Thanks for the story and the pictures.

  17. katskrackerbox
    April 29, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    Such beautiful pictures and very educational! Thanks for sharing. :-)

  18. Jules
    April 29, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    This looks like a really lovely crise. I wish I could have been there with you. Looking forward to more of your pics and don’t ya just LOVE picnik.

    Oh, and one thing I just found out about it. I used to post from Picnic to my Flickr account. Well Picnik only allows you to store so many photos. SO……. I went and deleted some from Picnik, and found that they were deleted from my Flickr account and thus my blog too. DRAT!!

    Just FYI

  19. etteY
    April 29, 2008 at 8:03 pm

    cool shots! :D

  20. Chris
    April 29, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Pretty pics!

Comments are closed.