Sea Turtles and Northern Cardinals – Who’da Thunk?


There is a variety of wildlife here on Maui. We have seen the whales each morning and maybe tomorrow we’ll be taking a boat tour for whale watching.

The funny thing is seeing birds from home here on the island, house sparrows are as common and numerous here as at home. Northern cardinals are also here, but seeing them on the beach is very strange. Stranger yet, was the fact that very large turtles are just a few dozen feet off shore. Along with our Northern Cardinal is one I am not familiar, the Red Crested Cardinal shown above. I believe they are native to the islands.

imageI will show the shorebirds on Nature and Wildlife Pics shortly. Today we visited the Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge. Many of the birds are ones that visit us in spring at breeding time. Don’t miss the post on the shorebirds, they are really pretty birds.


Like the cardinals, many other birds were grabbing food that tourists tossed their way as we sat on the beach. In the waters along the beach, the sea turtles were swimming among the coral reefs.


There were colorful fish, but the waters were not clear enough for photographs unless the fish was right in front of the camera. I was fortunate enough to have the turtle let me swim right up to it while it was feeding and I was snorkeling.



That is my friend snorkeling and the beach where we were. She brought along the equipment for us, but only doing this once before, I was not very comfortable in the flippers and chose not to use them. It was actually easier to swim amongst the coral reefs.


Stay tuned for images on both blogs. I have some really neat images that I took in Seattle too.


About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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26 Responses to Sea Turtles and Northern Cardinals – Who’da Thunk?

  1. So glad there’s lots of exploration of the familiar and the new! Enjoy!

  2. aussiebirder says:

    Stunning shots Donna, so wonderful for you to enjoy this experience!

  3. Oh, how exciting it must be, seeing them up close and swimming with the sea turtles. 🙂

  4. Aquileana says:

    Absolutely impressive!~ Congratulations. Best wishes & Happy week to you ⭐ Aquileana 😀

  5. Oh, I’m so jealous! I’m glad you’re having a wonderful time.

  6. Sounds an amazing place!

  7. bittster says:

    There you go! Cardinals already 😉
    I love the trip reports, glad you’re enjoying the trip, and it looks like a fantastic place to relax.

  8. Stunning shots. Looks like you are having an amazing time there.

  9. alesiablogs says:

    I am with Donna on vacation and spotting the fish and turtles for her. We found that huge turtle and could not believe how big he was. I am figuring he was over a 100 years old!

    • i hve worked with the olive ridley sea turtles (nesting) at playa san miguel costa rica, but i have never had the joy of swimiming with them! what a wonderful experience that must have been! donna had a GREAT guide! bravo!!!!!

  10. These are great images and scenes of this magical place. I especially love the sea turtle photos, as I have a special fondness for sea turtles. What a wonderful trip you are having~!

  11. Gorgeous Donna! I love the sea turtles…so beautiful!

  12. The Northern Cardinal looks like it is dressed too warm for the weather. That Red Crested Cardinal is a stunner! Cool pictures of the sea turtles.

  13. Andrea says:

    Hello Donna, do you still remember me? It’s been a long time, but i am still alive after some vacation from blogging. It looks like you are having great good times vacationing too! I can’t do photographing while snorkeling, i am afraid of deep waters. So i feel deprived because our town is internationally known for scuba diving!

  14. Annette says:

    It’s snowing here and your pics are more than welcome, Donna. Aren’t the turtles amazing creatures and so quick too! I saw them in the Indian Ocean and was fascinated by their agility in the water. Enjoy your stay 🙂

  15. igardendaily says:

    Oh, I ache to go to Maui! That is so cool that you have seen some of the same birds there as you do at your home. And the turtle shots are gorgeous!

  16. Pat says:

    Oh, I love those sea turtles. The Red-crested Cardinal is beautiful.

  17. I saw and commented on this already, but this evening it is even more special, as I just returned from a superb presentation by a Sea Turtle expert! He works in several capacities on sea turtle protection efforts and research in our area of South Florida, and was the guest speaker at the monthly meeting our local Audubon Society of the Everglades group.

  18. debibradford says:

    Neat experience! I love the cardinals on the beach – how beautiful. We get nesting sea turtles here on the east coast – there are I think five different kinds that nest here from loggerhead to leatherback…how fun to swim with sea turtles! What an opportunity!

  19. Karen says:

    What a grand time you must be having.

  20. Indie says:

    Wow, so awesome to see the turtles so close. They are beautiful!

  21. Donna I love that Red Crested Cardinal….and what a treat to snorkel and see the turtles.

  22. What a magical experience swimming with sea turtles. What was the turtle like? Are they quite friendly, they always seem to be curious creatures.

  23. Lyle Krahn says:

    I was right! Your sea turtles are great. It must have been a hoot to have one swim toward you. The photos and experiences are making this trip of yours seem amazing. Hope you are enjoying it to the full.

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