Living sky.

This current Weekly Prompt Photo Challenge is Sky.

A subject that I have rather a lot of options available for. Then I thought about living in Saskatchewan, Canada in the late 1990s. Saskatchewan proclaims itself the “Land of Living Skies” with the slogan on the provincial license plates.

That got me thinking about some of my shots from my time in Saskatchewan and some of the flocks of Snow Geese and Sandhill Cranes. This is a flock of Sandhill Cranes flying to roost at sunset in the autumn. The photo was taken north of Little Quill Lake, part of a wetland complex in Saskatchewan.

Living sky.

White-tailed Deer at dusk.

One from the archives, taken in Saskatchewan, Canada in the late 1990s. This group of White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus) appeared while I was stood on a ridge waiting for the moon to rise over some snow and hoarfrost covered prairie.

Luckily I had chosen the location so that I could use a telephoto lens to make the moon as big as possible in the planned shot. As a result, I had my telephoto set up on the tripod when the deer appeared. They’re in a hay field on the other side of a gravel road.

There was in the teens of deer, split into various groups. I was trying to select the most interesting group while waiting for the moon to appear.

Winter White-tailed Deer at dusk.

Frosted Squirrel.

One from the archives, taken in Saskatchewan, Canada in the late 1990s. And just in case you’re wondering, frosted squirrel is not a recipe.

This Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) was photographed one winter morning at around –30°C. The squirrel has frost on the tips of some of the hairs on its tail despite the sun and the photo being taken in the late morning if I recall correctly.

Eastern Gray Squirrel with frost on its tail.

Male Common Redpoll in winter.

One from the archives, taken in Saskatchewan in the late 1990s. I found a small flock of Common Redpolls (Acanthis flammea) feeding on windblown seeds caught in a snow bank.

Due to the temperature and wind I set up a portable hide (blind). This allowed me to get close to the birds without disturbing them while keeping slightly warmer as I was out of the wind. Sitting in the hide also put me closer to eye level with the birds on the snow bank.

The red on the breast makes this individual a male. The current scientific classification of the various Redpoll species is under debate by the various taxonomic authorities. My reasoning is that if they can’t agree I’m sticking with this being a male Common Redpoll.

Common Redpoll on snow.

 

Frozen lake at sunset.

Actually, quite a small section of Last Mountain Lake at sunset in winter. Throwback Thursday travels back to Saskatchewan, Canada in the late 1990s.

Last Mountain Lake, also known as Long Lake, is approximately 93 km long but only 3 km wide at its widest point.

The northern section, where this shot was taken, is the Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area. The area is a major staging ground for Snow Geese on autumn migration along with other wildfowl and Sandhill Cranes.

Frozen lake at sunset.