Categories
Lens-Artists

Special Moments

This week Tina gives us the prompt Special Moments for the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge.

Weekly Prompts: Boundaries

A female Wilson’s Phalarope. I was on a section of the Middle Quill Lake shoreline looking for summer migrants when half a dozen Wilson’s Phalaropes flew in and started feeding around me. I lay down in the sand (and wildfowl poop) to photograph them at eye level. They completely ignored me, some of the birds came so close I couldn’t focus on them.

One Word Sunday: Bright

Having been experimenting with intentional camera movement recently this photo may be where it started for me. A competitor in the 1982 Le Mans 24 hour motorcycle endurance race enters the start/finish straight shortly before midnight. Far to abstract for the magazine editor but I liked the images and have been experimenting on and off ever since.

Throwback Thursday: 28th May 2020

An adult Eurasian Blue Tit feeding young in a specially constructed nestbox in a garden in Hatherton near Nantwich, Cheshire. I documented the entire nesting cycle from the beginning of nest building to the empty nestbox after the last youngster had left. Extensively published I spent a week looking at a nestbox photo on the contents page of the Radio Times without recognising it as mine.

One Word Sunday: Drama

Storm clouds and light beams over Loch Arkaig, Scotland. I was in Scotland one autumn with the plan of doing lots of landscape photography. With almost constant rain I wasn’t getting a lot of photos until the end of day three when the rain stopped towards sunset. One of the photos from this evening was published worldwide by Olympus Japan and won a national photo contest on the theme of ‘The Beauty of Light.’

Categories
Becky's Squares

Eye Level with a female Wilson’s Phalarope

This is my day 24 contribution to Becky’s July Squares on the theme of Perspective and another of my eye level perspective series.

This is a female Wilson’s Phalarope feeding on a section of the Middle Quill Lake shoreline in Saskatchewan, Canada. To get down to eye level with the bird I was lying in sand mixed with duck and goose poop.

 

July Squares: Eye Level with a female Wilson's Phalarope

 

Categories
Photo Challenges

A Photo a Week Challenge: Summer Vacation 2020

This is my contribution to the A Photo a Week Challenge: Summer Vacation 2020.

The prompt is about an ideal, dream vacation given the Covid-19 pandemic that makes vacation plans somewhat irrelevant at the moment. Which gave me the opportunity to look back and consider where I would like to return to with a digital camera.

Before the list of locations became too long I made sure only summer ones were on the list. This quickly made one location stand out, south central Saskatchewan.

 

A Photo a Week Challenge: Summer Vacation 2020

A summer plumage male American Goldfinch spying on the photographer. Photographed near the village of Punnichy.

 

Weekly Prompts: Boundaries

A female Wilson’s Phalarope on the shoreline of Middle Quill Lake.

 

A Photo a Week Challenge: Summer Vacation 2020

A male Mountain Bluebird with food for the young in a nearby nest. Photographed near the village of Punnichy.

 

A Photo a Week Challenge: Summer Vacation 2020

A Marbled Godwit in a marsh at Little Quill Lake.

 

Cosmic Photo Challenge: Through an Opening

Summer plumage American Avocets feeding on a slough near the village of Punnichy.

 

Tuesday Photo Challenge - Connect

An American White Pelican on a section of the Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area.

 

Categories
Becky's Squares

April Squares: Spinning Like Tops

This is my day 11 contribution to Becky’s April Squares: Top photo challenge.

This one will need some explaining. These are Wilson’s Phalaropes feeding on Middle Quill Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada. One of the three species that make up the Phalarope family of birds.

Phalaropes are waders (known as shorebirds in North America) with a couple of interesting features. One of their feeding techniques is to spin in circles when swimming. It’s unusual enough for a wader species to swim let alone spin in circles. The reason for the spinning is that it stirs up the water and mud on the bottom to bring food to the surface.

The other interesting feature of Phalaropes is that the females have the brighter, more impressive plumage while the males are duller. In this photo it’s a colourful female in front and a duller male behind. The reason for this is because once the female has laid her eggs she clears off, leaving the more camouflaged male to incubate the eggs and raise the young.

April Squares: Spinning Like Tops

 

Categories
Weekly Prompts

Weekly Prompts: Boundaries

The Weekly Prompts: Boundaries challenge got me thinking about the variable boundaries wild birds and animals put between themselves and humans.

The reason I say variable is because most species will keep their distance from humans. The more erratic and noisy the behaviour of the human the wider the boundary between them.

On the other hand, some understanding of animal behaviour and some fieldcraft will allow you to get within a few feet of many species. I have had wild birds and mammals approach me so closely that I couldn’t focus the lens I was using on them.

 

Weekly Prompts: Boundaries

Portrait of a female Wilson’s Phalarope taken at Middle Quill Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada. A flock of six Wilson’s Phalaropes landed close to me when I was photographing some American White Pelicans. I laid down in the sand and wildfowl poop at the edge of the lake and proceeded to spend some time with them. When I was lying down the birds started ignoring me. This female was so close I couldn’t get all her body in the frame. Some of the birds wandered so close I couldn’t focus on them.

 

Friendly Friday: Funny Furry Friends

This European Rabbit was photographed in Shropshire, England. I was surprised how relaxed some Rabbits were at this location. I know there was a Red Fox hunting them. I did wonder if they were so  relaxed because they knew that the Fox wouldn’t be around if there was a human in the area.

 

Cee's Fun Foto Challenge: Letter K

A juvenile Red Knot resting on the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton during its autumn migration. I had gone down to the shoreline for the sunrise and discovered two Red Knot. I spent long enough with them that they started ignoring me allowing me to photograph them feeding, bathing, preening and resting.

 

Friendly Friday Photo Challenge: Christmas Preparations

This Eastern Chipmunk was photographed in our yard in Ontario, Canada. The various birds and mammals got so used to me lying in the grass that summer that they started ignoring me. I had Chipmunks running across my legs while squirrels and birds landed in the Cedar branches a few feet away checking out the human in the grass.

 

Categories
One Word Sunday

Profile

A female Wilson’s Phalarope in profile.

Middle Quill Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada.

My One Word Sunday contribution.

Wilson's Phalarope in profile.

Categories
Weekly Prompts

Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Comfort

ThIs is my contribution to the Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Comfort.

My initial idea was a selection of comfortable looking bird and wildlife subjects. Then I got thinking about some of the close encounters I have had. When birds and wildlife have been comfortable enough to ignore me and carry on doing what they were doing before a photographer pointed a lens at them.

Lying in the yard in Ontario, Canada I was trying to get shots of an uncooperative male Cardinal when this Eastern Chipmunk started posing for the camera.

An Eastern Chipmunk posing for a photo.

I was in the yard photographing Sparrow species one spring when this American Red Squirrel started feeding on seed under the bird feeders. Ontario, Canada.

American Red Squirrel feeding.

I had gone down to the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton for the sunrise when I found a couple of juvenile Red Knot on the shoreline. I spent some time with them, they fed, bathed, preened and even slept in front of me. Ontario, Canada.

having a nap

I was sitting on a bench at Dominion Lookout on the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton when this Red Fox came trotting along the shoreline and continued on past me. Ontario, Canada.

Trotting Red Fox.

I was lying in a mix of sand and wildfowl poop photographing American White Pelicans when a small flock of Wilson’s Phalarope landed on the shoreline and proceeded to feed around me. This female posed for a portrait before walking so close to me that the lens couldn’t focus on her. Saskatchewan, Canada.

Female Wilson's Phalarope.

I was in the yard photographing birds when this Racoon appeared and started eyeing up the bird feeders. Ontario, Canada.

Raccoon with spiky wet fur.

I was photographing a plant in a ditch when this male Common Blackbird came over to investigate the strange behaviour of the human. Cheshire, England.

Male European Blackbird.