'scene' along the way, a second look, attention to detail, dragonflies, egrets, fun, in the neighborhood, nature, perseverance, photography

In search of dragonflies…

It didn’t occur to me to head to the little pond around the corner to look for dragonflies until I saw a friend post pictures of one. So when I headed there this morning I had no trouble spotting them, but they seemed to be landing on the mucky looking stuff at the edge of the pond. You see that in the feature photo. The reeds at the shore had no leaves or flowers quite yet, so I didn’t get the sort of photos I might have preferred. I’ll have all summer to try, try, again.

What was frustrating was the fact that the air was full of the big, orange dragonflies that will fly by at eye level, but never land anywhere for you to get a picture. So you might give in to the urge to try to photograph one in the air, with very limited success.
And an egret drops in and hunts along the shore for a bit while you take pictures. And when you look at the pictures in the computer you see that three of those big, fat dragonflies photo bombed the picture..
It just dawned on me that that’s pollen in the water, just like it is decorating my car.
Nice of this tiny little butterfly to stay still for a minute. That made me happy.
One last dragonfly, or maybe it’s the same one.
a second look, adventure, attention to detail, friends, fun, making memories, nature, pelicans, perseverance, photography, technology

Homosassa Springs residents…

What a perfect day we chose to visit Homosassa Springs State Park. The weather couldn’t have been better, which the visitors appreciated, but the animals seemed to be enjoying it also. It was warm enough that the people didn’t need a sweater, but not so warm that the animals were hiding in the shade. Sometimes you see the foxes just pacing along the borders of their enclosure. The one in the feature photo looks to me to be just enjoying the day. Shortly after I took this picture it closed it’s eyes and went to sleep.

More often than not when you visit the park this bear is snoozing in the shelter of his ‘porch’, but on this day he was enjoying the sunshine.
Here is another resident who was out and about instead of looking for a place to nap.
This great egret is displaying her breeding plumage, so we know what’s on her mind.
I liked the expression on this pelican’s face. I think there were more pelicans than any other birds here in the pond.
Here you see Lu, the adopted Floridian who was allowed, by popular demand, to remain in place when this facility passed into state control. He has now reached the grand old age of 63 and is retired from his former role as a movie star.

There are a million pictures in the camera from this trip. Or 1357, I lost count. I chose to work on a few pictures of animals that I took fewer photos of and then moved on. The bursts of images that my new camera takes leaves me scratching my head as I try to choose the ‘best’ ones. I will have plenty to keep me busy tomorrow as rain is in the forecast. A great day of practicing with our new cameras, all three of us, and then lunch along the riverside.

'scene' along the way, a second look, adventure, attention to detail, birds, Circle B Bar Reserve, Florida wildlife, friends, fun, Ibis, nature, old dogs new tricks, Pedaling Along, perseverance, photography


I saved this set of pictures from our trip to the B on the 7th. I was watching a glossy ibis in the shrubbery, a not so common site. And it was nearly at eye level, another uncommon reason to be paying attention. As I watched the white ibis flew in and landed in front of the glossy, which caused no alarm at all. They then proceeded to raise their wings in complete harmony with each other, and basically mirror each other’s movements as I watched in amazement. I stood there shooting bursts until I figured enough already, and as I turned my attention elsewhere they continued their dance in total harmony.

Whoa, where did she come from?
I watched in amazement, and thought how lucky I was for this series to land in my lap. So to speak.
They saw their audience, but didn’t seem to mind.
Maybe they thought this was their best side.
Nap time, perhaps.
adventure, attention to detail, birds, brainstorms, connections, Florida landmarks, Florida wildlife, friends, fun, making memories, natural wonders, perseverance, photography, road trip, technology

The Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive…

This place has been on my mind to visit for a while now. It’s not a place to go in the summer when the sun is relentless, even if you are driving and hopping in and out of the car for pictures all day. As it turned out this particular day was quite windy, and therefore chilly, but I thought it was a great location to take my friend and her new camera with its great zoom.

This first gator view was across the water. I thought my friend might be freaked out, but she was too busy taking pictures to panic.
I loved the little grebe.
Anhingas, they are everywhere,
The colors on this grackle caught our eye. Shot through the windshield. Apparently the camera ignored the dirty glass, isn’t technology grand?
Ibis, in formation.
An Osprey hunting. I have no idea why the sky was so dark in this shot.
Did the osprey find his lunch? This one did anyhow.
A snowy egret, with her golden slipper on display.
A tricolor heron, pausing for a moment in the sun.
Merlin says that this is a Wilson’s Snipe. A first for me!

We drove home and stopped at our favorite, and only, place to get a ‘South Shore Pizza’ here in Florida. Kathy agreed it was up to par. I left Brockton, MA at age 20, and longed for this fabulous pizza ever since, always being sure to visit the Cape Cod Cafe when I’m ‘home’. Now I can get one whenever the urge strikes!

'scene' along the way, Amazing artwork, attention to detail, attitude adjustments, Circle B Bar Reserve, Florida landmarks, friends, fun, Just do it, learning, live and learn, making memories, nature, Nature's beautiful creatures, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, road trip, Tricolored heron


Yesterday I had a comment or two about the ability of the new camera, a Canon r7 mirrorless camera, to take a huge number of shots in a burst. I usually have it set to do just that if I’m photographing birds, or wildlife at all really. Just in case something exciting happens. So let me explain that I feel hardly any responsibility for these photos I’m posting today. The feature photo is the first in a sequence of 10 photos that the camera took in less than a second. My contribution was to see the lighting and reflections, and I anticipated the Tri-color Heron would take off. I wanted the tracking in the camera to follow the bird, and it did. these are the 10 consecutive frames that it took. Makes me happy to think that my investment in this camera has turned out to be exactly what I hoped it would be. I used the r 100-400 lens, made for the mirrorless Canon cameras, and not expensive at all. Or as these things go.

The feature photo is the take off, this is frame #2.
Stretching his wings in frame #3.
Full wing extension in frame #4.
The dive for the prize in frame #5.
Putting the brakes on with his wings in #6,
#7, will he come up with lunch?
I thought/hoped he caught his prey, but apparently not. #8
Not this time, #9
And then he flew away, out of the nice light.

We spent the beginning of the walk looking into the morning sun. I didn’t bring my visor so it was tough. It was lucky that this sequence happened in such nice light. I will give lots of credit to luck, and that’s okay.

a second look, adventure, attention to detail, birds, Circle B Bar Reserve, connections, eagles, egrets, Florida landmarks, friends, fun, making memories, natural wonders, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, technology

The Gray Ghost…

There you have it, the inspiration for many a photographer to head to Circle B Bar Reserve. It’s a Northern Harrier, and I didn’t expect to see it at all. Or ever. We were on our last stretch of trail, which is wide open to see the sky in all directions, but our intention was to make it back to the car before the battery in the scooter gave out. But we forgot all about that when we saw this bird, circling in the distance. I zoomed my lens to the full 400mm, but in the bright light and at that distance I couldn’t see if it was in the frame or not. But I took the shots anyhow. I’ve seen photographers standing with their cameras on their tripods, just waiting, hoping to see him. If they did I’m sure they got better pictures than this, but for my circumstances I’ll take it.

This Pied-Billed Grebe was a first to see here also, but one visited my lake a few years ago.
You’ve heard of a bump on a log…
Heading out on this trail with all it’s roots may be what challenged the battery of the scooter, but now we know where to look for the eagles.
We never did figure out what this egret was so intent on, but we all passed by not 8 feet away and he didn’t even flinch.
Another photographer asked what bird this is, and I answered that it was a Yellow-Rumped Warbler. Then she turned around and proved me right.

It was a fun day, but I crashed when I got home and sat down. It wasn’t a nap, I was done for the day. Now to check out some more of the 1334 pictures from yesterday. I was shooting in the fastest burst mode of the new camera, which is great if the bird takes off or something. But when they are still you just have the tiniest little eye blinks or head tilts to decide which is your best shot. But I’m not complaining.