birds, Cranes, Florida wildlife, nature, nesting, photography, sunrise

Close encounters…

Bayport was calling me this morning, for a sunrise photo and maybe see the eagles on the way home.  As I watched the sunrise it seemed not to be going to develop much color, so I decided to switch to the big lens.  I always wondered about the shots I’d see fellow photographers getting when they use a telephoto lens to get a shot that I would expect to want to use a wide angle to capture.  I have to admit, the shots were different, and I liked them.4-13pastelsunrise4-13600mmsunrise24-13600mmsunrise4-13sunset44-13sunset5I did check for eagles on the way home but didn’t see any.  But as I drove up Spring Hill Drive and was just a couple of blocks from home I had to stop for a Sandhill crane in the road.  There were two of them, one in the grass, and I put on my flashers to warn the drivers behind me.  This street is two lanes in each direction, plus a ‘suicide lane’ (as Charley called it) to use if you needed to make a left turn.  It wasn’t until after I stopped that I saw them, the chicks, little ones, just feet off of the street.  The crane I stopped for had moved to the grass, so I took the right hand turn and pulled over, and was very glad to have the zoom lens on the camera.  I walked to the front of my car to hide a little, I didn’t want the cranes to move into the street because they were threatened by me, and I was able to get several pictures before they moved behind some shrubbery.  If they hadn’t been so close to a busy street I’d have followed them, but I didn’t.  What I wanted to do is see if that was ‘my’ Sandhill crane family.  I needed to know if ours were still on the nest, but when I got home the glare of the sunrise was so bad that I couldn’t see, so I called my neighbor to see if they could see mom out there.  I was happy to know that our cranes and eggs were still out there, but now I had another crane family to worry about.  This stuff ain’t for sissies.4-13bytheroad4-13familyfeature4-13ourcranes14-13ourcranes2I took the last two pictures later.  I’m in vigil-mode now that I’ve seen chicks.  Both Mom and Dad were out there tending to things and I was sure I was missing the nativity scene.  But Mama settled back onto the egg(s), and I was a little disappointed, but on the other hand I hadn’t missed anything either.  And the last picture?  I couldn’t resist putting it up because of the dragonfly photo-bomb.  Maybe the dragonflies do do surprising things after all!