Spring is in full bloom, signaling something we look forward to every year: It’s baby bird season!

Everywhere you look in the Greater Everglades ecosystem, hatchlings are cracking open their multi-colored shells to peek out into the world for the first time. And they’re hungry! Their mouths are often wide open and pointed skyward, marking bullseyes for their parents to drop food inside. These birds will mature relatively quickly and will soon take flight to join the flocks that are indicative of thriving Florida ecosystems.

Friends of the Everglades Multimedia Producer Leah Voss has spent the last few weeks capturing these Easter-egg-come-early moments. Barred owls, eagles, osprey, and sandhill cranes topped her list in Martin County, while a visit to the Wakodahatchee Wetlands in Palm Beach County earned her images of some of the state’s most iconic wading birds — great blue herons, egrets and wood storks — in all stages of new life, from nesting, to egg laying, to the wild and fuzzy plumage of brand new baby birds. 

These images reflect one of the best Everglades wading-bird seasons in decades, according to scientists. That’s something worth celebrating.

Use the buttons above to scroll through our gallery of baby birds.