Photo Adventures with Curiosity and Learning

April 15, 2009: A visit to Dee's projects

My sister-in-law is a lawyer / mining engineer. You don't want to mess with her. Last visit (this is my favorite place to recover from a work week at Duke) I showed off my GPS enabled camera. This year, she took me around to several reclamation sites to get a photo characterization of the restoration of active native wildlife. I was amazed. The wetlands and lakes and hapitats they have built are really amazing. So here is the story.

Where we went - from Plant City to the project sites

A super scooper-dooper. This machine grabs about 50 cubic yards of ore-bearing sand.

apr 15 9156 scooper

A section of the mine

apr 15 9166 phosphate mine

Another view

apr 15 9167 mine

We walked to the big scooper-dooper and took some photos - one of me of course

apr 15 9172 me

The boom of the scooper-dooper - with the bucket at the base

apr 15 9179 scooper boom

Another view of the boom

apr 15 9182 scooper boom

ANother section of the mine with some ground water

apr 15 9183 mine

The cockpit where the pilot operates the machine

apr 15 9186 scooper console

The bucket

apr 15 9193 scooper

A view of the entire machine

apr 15 9197 scooper

This is recently reclaimed section of the mined property

apr 15 9200 early reclamation

This is a more mature section of reclaimed property - lake and wetlands

apr 15 9213 reclaimed wetlands

With birds flying around

apr 15 9229 wetlands

Lots of birds and spiders and plants and natural stuff

apr 15 9241 reclaimed wetlands bird

Looking in a different direction

apr 15 9250 reclaimed wetlands


apr 15 9294 black bird takeoff

Reflections of a bird

apr 15 9255 bird reflection


apr 15 9256 black Bird walking


apr 15 9274 black bird walking


apr 15 9285 bird flying

Flying again - look how straight the legs are - perfect form for a bird

apr 15 9297 black bird

A small damselfly - often seen by members of the Flickr group: Macro Maniacs of Singapore

apr 15 9340 damselfly

Another view

apr 15 9342 green damselfly

Dee and her team transplant gopher turtles - and endangered species. Here is the burrow of a gopher turtle

apr 15 9453 gopher turtle burrow

Here is a different burrow

apr 15 9459 gopher turtle home

The road to somewhere

apr 15 9465 road to wetlands

Another reclaimed section of mined property - more wetlands

apr 15 9471 dry wetlands

I think these are dandelion-like buds

apr 15 9473 to be blossoms

Another view of the restored wet lands

apr 15 9477 dry wetlands

Another view - and in the distance is the phosphate processing plant. apr 15 9478 dry wetlands

Here is another view of the reclaimed area with the processing plant in the background. The plant is the world's largest phosphate processing plant - and it is huge

apr 15 9480 phosphate plant reclaimed land

About to bloom

apr 15 9494 blossoms

A green dragonfly, Eastern Pondhawk, Erythemis simplicicollis

Eastern Pondhawk Erythemis simplicicollis

On a different platform

Erythemis simplicicollis Eastern Pondhawk

From the top

Erythemis simplicicollis Eastern Pondhawk

A close viwe - the little green things around the head are like emeralds

Eastern Pondhawk Erythemis simplicicollis

Probably a black Mason Wasp, Monobia quadridens

Mason Wasp, Monobia quadridens

Reflections on a black Mason wasp: Monobia quadridens

Mason Wasp Monobia quadridens

A giant tinker toy structure - the world's largest phosphate processing plant

apr 15 9547 tinker toys

A processing tank where stuff is added to control the settling rate of the phosphate

apr 15 9551 processing tank

A conveyor and the end product - a huge mound of raw phosphate. The size of this pile illustrates the current world recession and lack of demand for phosphate products (fertilizer etc).

apr 15 9561 phosphate pile

Another view of the phosphate moutain

apr 15 9566 phosphate pile

Loading a small amount of phosphate

apr 15 9570 loading phosphate

The road to the top of the phosphate mountain

apr 15 9575 phosphate road

A platform - I think for dumping phospate onto the mountain

apr 15 9584 dumping machine

The processing plant

apr 15 9593 world largest phosphate processing

Another view

apr 15 9596 processing plant storage

Another reclaimed area - and a white egret?

apr 15 9609 crane

Another view of the wetlands

apr 15 9623 crane

The diesel engine used to move train loads of phosphate

apr 15 9640 train engine

Another wetland area

apr 15 9659 dry wetlands

A little flower

apr 15 9664 flower blossom

A cattle farm from reclaimed mined property

apr 15 9670 cattle farm from reclaimed

Here live a strange owl that lives in the ground - a burrowing owl

apr 15 9674 owl burrow

The Burrowing owl's home

apr 15 9676 owl home context

apr 15 9684 burrowing owl context

A fuzzy view of a burrowing owl

apr 15 9684 burrowing owl

Three donkeys

apr 15 9685 3 donkeys

Our team - Dee, Grant and Jimmy

apr 15 9688 dee grant jimmy

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer