Playing in Tampa Bay
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Diana Reynolds on Egmont KeyRe Metau - Playing in Tampa BayHere to Eternity
April 2007
 
While in Bradenton, we took many weekend trips out to Egmont Key, an uninhabited island that serves as a bird sanctuary located between the bay and the gulf.  It was the perfect place to go get away from it all in just a few short days. Not only was the island an avian paradise, it also turned out to be a popular place for schools of dolphin. Often the clamor of gulls in the morning brought us topside in time to see several of these magnificent aquatic mammals feeding.  It was always the perfect way to awake.

Dolphin off our Bow SpritA quick dinghy ride over to the shore gave us the opportunity to wander around in the wild.  The Gulf side presented us with postcard worthy azure seas and fine, sandy white shores, prompting us to reenact the notorious 'From Here to Eternity' scene on the beach.

We trekked through the deserted isle, and as well as sea birds of all variety, we often saw turtles and just a glimpse of an eagle as she sat in her large nest. Egmont Key TurtleAfter sunset, it surprised us to learn that the flocks of gulls, pelican and cormorants that congregated on the southern shore never seemed to sleep. Their nocturnal squawks and calls would waft over the water, beckoning others to join the gathering. All night long sounded very much like New Years Eve in New York City and I presume the 'Early Bird' proverb doesn't apply to these sea creatures. But we took pleasure in their nightly din as it blended with the sound of waves lapping on the shore and transformed into a tropical lullaby.

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"A tourist remains an outsider throughout his visit; but a sailor is part of the local scene from the moment he arrives." ~ Anne Davison