This was one of my most challenging and yet rewarding photography experiences. I was sitting on a wharf, while the sun was setting in the late afternoon, watching pelicans in small groups dive bomb over and over again for food. I had to photograph a moving target, in frame and in focus, and hopefully come away with some incredible poses of these pelicans in flight. This is my favorite photo, I hope you enjoy seeing these incredible birds as much as I enjoyed taking their pictures.
This gorgeous, nesting osprey was giving me a very stern stare while I was taking her photo. I don’t think it’s her fault though because ospreys look inherently grumpy. Contrary to how this photo appears, I am not close at all, but she spotted me from miles away! After soon deciding that I was nothing worth worrying over, her and her partner went back to usual osprey activities such as mating, eating recently caught fish and general nest building and sitting. I was lucky enough to be able to watch this osprey pair for a few days, and I absolutely loved getting such an insight into their daily activities.
To see a photo of the male osprey, click here.
Any creature in a meadow of bright yellow flowers is adorable, but these cute and furry ground squirrels are also very entertaining. You may also know them as marmots, groundhogs, woodchucks or whistle pigs. The last name describes the shrill call they make to alert the colony of trespassers nearby (such as us humans). Which also means that as you walk through whistle pig territory (Yellowstone National Park), you have high-pitched music following you around everywhere you go.
This male moose was just one of several moose we saw while traveling through Yellowstone National Park. We actually saw this particular moose on two occasions as he obviously likes to graze in the same area, and was accompanied by his girlfriend who was grazing nearby (I had to crop her rump out of my photo). Having visited in the Spring we were also lucky enough to catch a mother and her moose calf playing by a river. Knowing nothing about moose, I was surprised to learn that they grow new antlers every year, so that in Spring they don’t look like the typical male moose pictures you often see with giant antlers. Also, they are often found alongside rivers, lakes and marshy meadows because they like to feed on many aquatic plants as well, and have learned to be excellent swimmers and even dive for their underwater food! So when out looking for moose to photograph, check the nearby rivers and lakes…. who knew?!
This magnificent bird in the jungle of Belize was so uniquely colored with blue blending into green and green into yellow, and a splash of brilliant sky blue highlighting the top of it’s head. The coloration of this bird gave it it’s name – Blue-crowned motmot. I waited for this bird to sing so that I could hear its voice, but it stayed silent and watched me with caution. Their call is said to be similar to the hoot of an owl. Perhaps it did not want to draw any extra attention to itself, which must be hard being so brightly colored. It has a few long tail feathers which it swings back and forth like a pendulum while perching on a branch. These birds nest in burrows in the ground rather than high up in the trees, making the eggs and babies easy prey for sneaky snakes.
This brightly colored scarlet macaw was spotted with it’s equally impressive partner, chowing down on beach almonds (Terminalia catappa tree) along the coast of Costa Rica. As is quite typical of the parrot family, they are large and they are loud! You almost always see them flying and hanging out in pairs, and they know how to communicate very well with each other. They will let each other know when it’s time to fly off to another spot with a very loud screech. This was such a spectacular sight on a bright sunny beach day – life doesn’t get any better than this. It makes me sad to think about how many of these birds live in isolation, in cages, unable to be free or have a partner to chat with. As glorious as they are to look at, nothing is more glorious than spotting them flying freely through the sky as nature intended it.