Monday, February 13, 2012

Looking for Photos

My new 400mm lens is too heavy for me to carry on our walks so I've been driving to spots where we have seen interesting subjects.  Unfortunately, the wildlife doesn't usually wait around for me to return with the camera.  Still, patience has its rewards.
I checked on the heron rookery.  The males are staking out their territory, waiting for some willing female.  There don't seem to be any takers yet and only three nests in this tree that had at least six last year.  I guess it is still early, I'll check back in a few weeks.
Hooded Mergansers had been spotted in this pond and Hubby and I had seen them nearby on one of our walks.  No luck when I returned with the camera but I did capture an image of this Wood Duck, hiding in the shadows with some mallards.
Over at the Mallard Pond I had twice seen a river otter so I headed there.  A cormorant posed for me.











 A Black Phoebe landed on a branch.  I do like these little flycatchers, they look so dapper in their cut-away coats.  I enjoy watching them flit off their perch to hawk insects out of the air.

I saw Mallards, Pied-billed Grebes and Egrets but no sight of the otter.
Wait, I see ripples, something is swimming!

That's not a river otter, it's a muskrat.  He came closer and closer, presenting me with a problem I've never had before in photographing wildlife.  He came so that my lens couldn't focus!  I kept having to back up.  He was only about five feet away when he finally noticed me and moved away.
On my way back to the car I spotted a flash of white in a small pond.  Training my lens on the pond I saw not one but two pair of Hooded Mergansers!  Aren't they cute? 
They were quite a ways away but my lens didn't fail me.  I'm pleased with the images but still hope to do better.  I will keep looking, hoping for a closer shot.

To find more views of our wonderful world, go to Our World, Tuesday, hosted for us by Arija, Gattina, Lady Fi, Sylvia and Sandy.

To find more images of birds, check out World Bird Wednesday, hosted for us by Springman.

30 comments:

Sylvia K said...

Oh, you did get some terrific shots, Martha! Love the muskrat! How fun that you were able to get such a close-up! Ah, those male egrets!! Not too different from male humans -- always on the look out! Wonderful post and a great look at your world! Hope you have a beautiful day!

Sylvia

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

You certainly WERE rewarded on this jaunt! And so were your readers. Thank you. How funny about the muskrat!

Gaelyn said...

Oh how I like those closeups. Sweet new lens. Well, unless you're going to swim with the wildlife. ;)

Carol said...

Some great captures there!!! Love the herons!

Gary said...

Great sequence!! Fun when something comes too close isn't it? Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

aka Penelope said...

I didn’t realize muskrats were so cute. How nice that it came within five feet from the camera. It seems to be trying to take in a little sun after its swim. I also like last year’s yellow grasses and how they reflect in the water creating patterns amid the reddish foliage. :)

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful variety of birds, loved the great photos.

Indrani said...

I wish to own one 400mm lens ... hopefully soon. These are great captures.

Linda Reeder said...

I know what you mean about carrying the big lens around. And then have the subject too close!
I love the mergansers!

Barb said...

I'd love to see your new lens, Martha - it must look huge! I'm impressed that you can hold it still enough without a tripod. I have trouble even with my 250mm. That Muskrat must have wanted to be your model.

Kay L. Davies said...

One of my favorite old-time jazz songs was Muskrat Ramble. Still is, actually.
However, I've never seen a muskrat in person, and here this one almost adopted you. How fun!
Love the heron rookery.
K

Stewart M said...

It always is a bit of a shock when you realise you are too close!

Very nice pictures.

Cheers - Stewart M - Australia

FotoAnna said...

Love the variation of your photo's Marthe and what a pity that your new lens is to heavy...
Beautiful post Marthe!
Greetings from Holland,
Anna :-))

EG Wow said...

Yes, I'd say your patience is paying off handsomely!

SKIZO said...

Good Shots
Weell done

Wanda..plain~N~simple said...

Excellent shots, your patience paid off very well.

Crafty Gardener said...

I enjoyed seeing your fantastic photos.

heyBJK said...

Beautiful shots, Martha! I know it's WBW, but I really like that muskrat photo! Very nice!

Andrew Fulton said...

Wonderful images of your beautiful birds Martha...
I loved seeing the Muskrat..

mick said...

Great photos. Your new long lens is doing a good job for you!

Carole M. said...

..lovely post; and the black phoebe is definately my favourite today

holdingmoments said...

Great set Martha.
That Black Phoebe is a beauty.

joo said...

Lovely photos Martha! I love the muskrat:)

NatureFootstep said...

you have so many gret birds. I would love to see the Hooded merganser among others. :)

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Martha great series, but I especially like the Great Blue Herons!

bailey-road.com said...

Nice captures! The Black Phoebe is really pretty!

Springman said...

Since I am a 400mm user I love to hear stories concerning your learning curve with the long lens. Isn't that something to have to much lens?! Your pictures are gorgeous, the 400 has brought a new perspective to your photography. Awesome stuff!

Larry said...

Great post Martha! I'd say your new lens is serving you well. You better start doing some curls with a two pound weight, then work your way up ;-)

You got a perfect shot of the Muskrat, even if you did have to back up some. Sweet shot of the Phoebe and I love Hoddies!

katney said...

I've not yet seen the rookery where our herons hang out. It is probably off the beaten track on the Reservation--somewhere where the river loops away from the road.

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

Goodness me your lens is producing fabulous close ups. Apologies for not calling by to comment very often, time just seems to get swallowed up by real life!