This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: Look Up.
The first thing that came to mind when I read the prompt was the various bird species I have photographed in the yard as they look up, making sure that there isn’t a predatory species about.
A male American Goldfinch checking the sky.
A Chipping Sparrow looking up.
A Raccoon looking up, contemplating going after the bird feeders despite me being out in the yard.
A Red-breasted Nuthatch looking up as it feeds in the grass.
This is my contribution to the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: Favourite Things.
So here is a hodgepodge of some of my favourite things.
My favourite Squirrel species, an American Red Squirrel on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada.
One of my favourite sunrise locations, Colpoy’s Bay and the Niagara Escarpment, Ontario, Canada.
One of my favourite North American shorebirds, two American Avocets feeding on a slough in Saskatchewan, Canada.
My favourite North American Sparrow species, a diminutive Chipping Sparrow on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada.
One of my favourite European birds, a European Robin given a selective colour treatment.
My favourite lens, the Olympus OM Zuiko 350mm. I purchased it used nearly a quarter of a century ago and it’s still my go to lens for birds and wildlife. The ground pod set up in the photo was used to photograph the American Red Squirrel at the start of this post. The lens has also been used for quite a few landscape, sunrise and sunset images over the years.
My favourite camera bag. The Domke F-2 RuggedWear, a waxed cotton canvas bag. I decided to try a canvas Domke F-6 bag a few years ago. I wanted a smaller, lighter shoulder bag for my retro kit of three (now four) manual focus prime lenses. I discovered that the soft canvas bag stayed on my hip without swinging and bouncing around and seemed easier on my shoulder. I needed a bigger bag than the F-6 for my regular kit of zoom lenses so I swapped the Tenba bag I had been using for decades for the Domke F-2.
Taken a week ago, this is a juvenile Chipping Sparrow in the yard. It must have been a very late brood, the adults had been feeding three young a few days before this photo was taken.
This juvenile is already looking after itself as it searches for something to eat in the grass. They will soon be heading south for the winter.
I say simply a Sparrow but the Chipping Sparrow (Spizella passerina) is one of my favourite North American Sparrow species. But they never seem to want to cooperate with me if I’m behind a camera.
This particular Chipping Sparrow appeared in the yard, messed about hiding behind feeder poles and blades of grass before flying up onto the roof. After mocking me from the roof for a while it flew down and posed for a couple of photos before starting to avoid me again.