'scene' along the way, a second look, birds, ducks, Florida wildlife, friends, fun, nature, perseverance, photography, unintended images, weather

Out and about…

It was a perfect day, even more perfect than ‘usual’, so I decided to take a ride around the neighborhood on my trike. The beauty of the trike is that I can load my camera into the front basket, just in case might I spot a photo op. And I did get excited about what I saw. Over a nearby lake I saw what I thought were seagulls circling overhead. But I didn’t pay attention until one of them suddenly dove straight down into the water and disappeared into the water. Of course I started shooting when it began to circle again, which let me notice the forked tail, and now I was excited that maybe it was a Swallowtail Kite, which I’ve only spotted once or twice. It’s a shame I didn’t also bring my 100-400mm lens because if I had gotten a better look I wouldn’t have tried to take so many shots. In the computer I could plainly see it was a seagull after all.

This is actually a Royal Tern, and that is surprising in itself because they are salt water shore birds, and I that’s not how I’d describe this suburban neighborhood.
A Muscovy duck striking a pose at the rookery. My friend had wanted to check and see if the birds were coming back yet. I was sure they hadn’t, but there were a few birds at least.
The anhinga condo tree was busy with birds flying in and out. Nesting seems to be underway there, but not in the shrubs along the water.
I love these juvenile ibis. They will be snow white when they grow up.
Just a shot to show the iridescence of the Muscovy’s feathers in the sun.
This is a sight you won’t often see. A photographer doing what he needed to do to get the shot.

I have to say that there are a lot of sandy spots dotting that grass, and that always has me on the lookout for fire ants. Rest assured I remained on my feet the entire time.

'scene' along the way, a second look, adventure, brainstorms, bucket list, friends, fun, making memories, nature, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, sunset, technology, weather

It’s that time again…

Well, almost that time again. The time when our drive to Clearwater for our Tuesday night photography club meeting coincides with the sunset. That means that as we make the long trip down Edgewater Drive I will be shooting photos out the car window with my iPhone. The last time I did that the sunset was fabulous, and I held the phone out the window a bit further and didn’t see myself in the side mirror, or I could crop myself out of the picture. This time we were a bit early for the really great color to have developed quite yet, and I was reluctant to hold my brand new iPhone 14 Pro Max far enough out the window to get myself out of the picture. Maybe I ought to sit in the back seat next time. Nice evening, fun meeting.

We weren’t going very fast, but too fast to have any control over what the scene was actually going to be.
We were early because we intended to stop for photos just a couple of blocks from the meeting place. This looked like a very nice sunset developing, and if there was any place at all to pull over we probably would have.
Now that the weather is cooler we will have to ride our electric vehicles down the bike path from one end of this drive to the other, stopping for pictures of course. Maybe not on a Tuesday though, so we can take all the time we need to enjoy the ride.
backyard visitors, birds, facing facts, fences, Florida wildlife, nature, perseverance, photography, weather

Gray and gloomy…

I should be ashamed to be lamenting over every day that isn’t sunny. In the summer I tell myself that I’ll accomplish lots of stuff when the weather breaks. Then when it’s in the 60s I think it’s too cold to do anything. Yes, I’m spoiled, I’ll admit it. We will have to put out some bird feeders for the various fence sitters I’ve been seeing out back. This one posed in front of the dark shadow of the neighbor’s lanai, making the day look that much gloomier. He stayed put when I opened the door to our lanai so I didn’t have to shoot through the screening. Nice of him.

This is a Northern Mockingbird. If he had been facing the other way and I was looking directly at that long tail I wouldn’t have had to look him up.
They have an amazing repertoire of songs they sing. They are very common in this area, and everywhere actually.

Happy Thanksgiving to friends and family near and far.

'scene' along the way, a second look, adventure, birds, Florida landmarks, fun, nature, perseverance, photography, weather

Walking in the park…

I had two goals today. First I hoped to see the eagles, but I missed them. It was chilly, did that get them up and out early, or were they still cuddled up in the nest? I thought I’d be able to shed the sweatshirt as the morning wore on, but not only did I keep it on, I kept it zipped up as I enjoyed a walk at John Chestnut Park.

I thought I was seeing puffs of feathers in the breeze, but the culprit was this tree, and others like it.
As usual, squirrels were the most abundant form of wildlife that I saw. This little guy was stalking me.
He double-checked to see if I maybe had a treat for him after all.
It was quiet on the boardwalk.
I wondered what creatures were looking back at me from the woods.
Busy little birds, too quick for me.
These little birds were what I hoped to shoot today, but this isn’t the shot I hoped to get.
I wonder if anyone is home?
I had hoped for a deer sighting. I got four shots as this one crossed the street, and they all looked just like this one.
Standing on one bridge looking through the foliage at another bridge, and it’s reflection.
A mini Bernie-doodle! This is proof that he sat still for a second or two…
In case you need to rest a while.
Peaceful scenery.
A final deer sighting, just as I was reaching the exit to the park.

In the heat of summer I long for cooler weather, sure that I’d spend as much time as possible outside if only it would get cooler. But it was 62 degrees in the house when I woke up this morning, time for fuzzy socks and cozy blankets. So I got out a little later than ‘usual’, but what a nice morning it was.

birds, fun, nature, old dogs new tricks, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, storms, sunset, weather

Setting the stage…

My vague desire to go somewhere to take pictures on Friday was defeated by the off and on rain and thunder we had all day long. Lucky for me I wasn’t the chef on duty for dinner, so when something caught my eye out the front door I was outside and up and down the street trying to figure out the best view. It almost didn’t matter because the sky was colorful in every direction.

Looking south here.
This is my usual sunrise view towards the east.
Three or four flocks of birds flew through the sky. I don’t usually try to photograph them from my phone, but I’m a sucker for a V formation.
But of course the most color was towards the west.
And this was the grand finale.

Some rainy days just wipe out the chances of a pretty sky. Others just set the stage.

backyard visitors, birds, Florida wildlife, nature, Nature's beautiful creatures, perseverance, photography, rain, storms, technology, unintended images, weather

Shake it off…

I was cooking breakfast this morning when I glanced out the sliding glass door and spotted a hawk on the fence. He was spreading his wings much like I see birds doing when I assume they are drying their feathers. But in the midst of the tropical storm we are having any attempt to shake off the water was hopeless. Maybe he was just enjoying a shower.

Considering that I was shooting through a glass door, which hasn’t been washed in quite a while, and out through the screened-in lanai, I’m pretty happy to see this image.
He was facing the other way in all the pictures where I caught him shaking it off, so mostly butt shots.
All the while he did seem to be keeping a watchful eye on things.

This was a day I had written off as having no chance to go out to shoot at all. And I didn’t, I stayed in to shoot. He stayed put on the fence for longer than I might have expected, and when he took off it was down into the neighbor’s yard behind me. I hope he caught his own breakfast. I ate mine once he disappeared. It’s still raining hard, but the wind has let up a bit. Tropical Storm Nicole seems to have spared us.