My little brain has been all abuzz. Days Two, Three, Six, and to some extent Four and Five are taking shape. I think I can blast out of Sanibel with a few key species and still have time for Fort DeSoto and Titusville and get to Daytona Beach Shores for the gull fly in. Mangrove cuckoo at Sanibel may not be so key as I thought. I can get them in June when I plan to do Miami and the Keys. But wait, I'll be going through Miami on the way to Flamingo to get Black rail and Saltmarsh sparrow. But wait, I can get Saltmarsh sparrow at Sanibel while I am skipping the shorebirds at Bunche Beach in favor of Fort DeSoto, thus the long drive to Flamingo on Day Three, would be only for Black rail. But maybe I could better spend my time on Day Three in the Miami and Homestead area picking up Miami specialties like White-winged parakeet, Red-whiskered bulbul, and Spot-breasted oriole as well as Bronzed and Shiny cowbirds and maybe a Brown-crested flycatcher. Why do that when I am planning to do Miami and the Keys on Day Six? Well, if I can get these out of the way on Day Three, it opens the door for a day trip to Dry Tortugas where I should be able to pick up Masked and Brown booby, Sooty tern, Brown noddy, Roseate tern, and maybe Black noddy or some oddball rarity. I would still have time before boarding the boat to look for Mangrove cuckoo and Black-whiskered vireo, and a few hours after the boat docks to get Antillean nighthawk. Days Four and Five are still a bit fuzzy. I may be working double shifts so it will be harder to get far away from south Florida, but I plan to do a Jacksonville to panhandle run for Day Five, either May 4 or 11. I hope to get a few Caribbean migrants early on the east coast, hopefully Connecticut warbler in the mix, then get the panhandle coast in time to catch the trans-gulf migrants, whatever may be left at that point, on the coast. I can catch the breeders in the mix, I hope. Shorebirds like White-rumped sandpiper will be important pickups at this time. Day Four will likely be in the Fort DeSoto area concentrating on trans-gulf migrants, which makes me wonder how much time should be spent on Day Two outside of Western tanager and Franklin's gull. I will have time to do the shorebirds on Day Four.
Let's see what happens!