We saw these two magnificent looking fellows while riding the Pikes Peak Cog Railway back in the summer of 2015. The attendant on the train told me they only see the bighorns about once every two weeks or so. This means we were pretty fortunate to have a few moments with them. The photo was taken through the railcar window at 300mm.
The birds below are waders. They like to wander along in an inch or two of water looking for food. If you are near shallow water or wetlands you have a good chance of seeing any of these guys.
On the left is a snowy egret at Elm Lake, the lake in the previous photo post. I waited and waited for it to move – stand, grab for a tasty, fly off, anything – but it just sat there. Oh well, it is a nice profile. We'll see snowy egrets in their breeding plumage this coming April at the birding festival.
The black and white bird in the middle is a black-necked stilt. This is an elegant bird that looks delicate but is pretty tough; in fact its range and numbers are increasing. Stilts have the longest legs in proportion to their bodies of any bird except the flamingo.
On the far right are two common gallinules that seem to be getting friendly in the spirit of the coming spring. Often called moorhens, these birds have incredibly long toes to allow them to walk over mud or atop floating vegetation. You can also see the bright red bill which extends up to become a forehead shield.
Now we are off to see whooping cranes, one of the rarest birds in North America.
Remember to click on the pictures to see them full sized.
Elm Lake is an interesting little lake at Brazos Bend State Park. It is teeming with wildlife, including frogs, snakes, all sorts of birds, and alligators of substantial size. On this particularly gloomy morning waiting for the rain to come, the lake with its old dead trees, little grassy islets, marshy shoreline, and bare trees hung with Spanish moss looked a bit spooky – especially knowing a large alligator could be lurking close to the water's edge.
This image is a panorama that is made up of several photos that have been "stitched" together in the computer. The feeling I had while I was there that morning just called for this monochrome treatment of the picture. I hope you like it.
“Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in…It's thin current slides away, but eternity remains.”
– Henry David Thoreau
They were sure "a-fishing" at Bennett Springs State Park in Missouri when we passed through this past October on our way home from visiting the twins. This view is looking upstream from a bridge over the spring-fed creek, but the scene was much the same looking the other direction. Here you see that the fisherman in the middle is just reaching down to land a hooked trout.
In our own little stream of life we have cast our fly many, many times, and caught more than our share of good times. The awesome thing is that we are still out there in the water looking for another "big one" to land.
My apologies to Robert Frost. His woods were not wet, his woods were snowy.
This was taken after the Houston "Tax Day Flood" in 2016. Though not nearly as bad as this past year's disastrous rains, the area still experienced some 17 to 20 inches of rain in one day. The near-perfect reflections which make the trees seem endless lead me to take this photo several days after the rains.
The image was a bit moody which prompted me to process it in monochrome. It's not exactly a "day brightener," but I hope you enjoy it.
Here's a photo I use as the desktop image on the computer. It is Linda walking down a meadow path at a small conservation refuge in Missouri. I had a bit of fun finishing the picture, adding some texture to it for a slightly different look. I sorta like the look. Do you?
I posted a similar photo of this same dilapidated pier back in May of 2016. The pier is on the Aransas Bay in Rockport, Texas, but perhaps since Hurricane Harvey even these ruins are gone. In its better days – some 25 years ago – we stood on this pier and watched the dolphins gambol in the bay.
This image was taken at different settings and processed differently, resulting in what is typically called a "high key" finish. The image has almost no contrast or shadow with the exception of the main subject – in this case the pier. The bay and the sky are very close in in color and tone, and you can barely see the the horizon. High key is a popular technique for portraits and street photography. Here we have gone past the street and wandered down to the water's edge. Let me know if this appeals to you.
Crossing over a small creek on Galveston Island I saw these two egrets enjoying the shade as they were looking for lunch. The larger bird on the left is a Great Egret and his smaller friend is a Snowy Egret.
With the way the sun created stark contrasts of whites and darks on the two birds, it seemed to me this photo would be most interesting in black and white. I hope you enjoy it.
A bird-in-the-grass photo is, perhaps, marginally more exciting than a photo of a bird-on-a-stick (the term, bird-on-a-stick, is the photographer pejorative for any perching bird picture). But a bird-in-the-grass is what we have.
We discovered that after a rain the yellow-crowned night herons show up at the local park to look for crawdads. This past week we headed to the park after a rainy night. It was worth our time with three or four night herons, a snowy egret, and a cattle egret. But the best part of the outing was that I was out of the car and taking pictures for the first time in four months!
Don's (not so) Weekly Photo
I do not always have a post to write, but I want to share my photos - so I started this weekly photo page.
Just one photo each week. The photo may be new or it may come from my pile of favorites. A different photo will be posted every week. Drop by and check it out.
Weekly has become a bit more erratic, hence the new – more accurate name.