Tuesday, March 31, 2009

March 31, 2009

Not all who wander are lost.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

March 30, 2009

This is my entry for i heart faces KIDS category: Pouting

This is my entry for i heart faces PETS category: Anything Goes

Go check out all the amazing photos at i heart faces.

March 29, 2009

Saturday, March 28, 2009

March 28, 2009

My friend and her two kids stopped by the other day to visit the cows (and maybe us, perhaps?). I was very pleased to see some "fresh faces" to shoot. (not that I'm getting tired of Ella, mind you). These kids are cute!

Below: He was so serious at times, not to mention that he completly ignored me. All boy!

Below: This sweet one would smile and talk to me as I took her picture, so long as Mom was close by.

Friday, March 27, 2009

March 27, 2009

Look at this picture, what do you see:

Do you see it now? The food chain in action?

Actually, I don't think the gator was interested in anything except catching a few rays of sun and some zzzz's. The heron on the other hand, he was after some lunch.

Are you getting sick of Lake Woodruff pics yet?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

March 26, 2009

I may live in the Sunshine State, but I don't like sun on my face. I try to keep a hat on as I sit through the kids soccer and baseball games. Last Saturday while out taking pictures, I had my favorite hat on. It is very light weight. Plus I like the bow. Anyways, as the day wore on, the wind picked up. For a while I took my hat off and stuffed it inside my jacket because I didn't want it to get blown away and loose it. But the sun was bright and I could feel my face getting warm. I put the hat back on and not a minute later a gust of wind sent it sailing.

I tried to grab it, but it was in the water. I looked around for a long stick to try to poke it to the side, but the banks were very marshy, wet and I couldn't tell where the land ended and the water started. Then I looked upstream just a few feet and on the other side of the bank, this is what I saw:

I left the hat floating right where it was. I felt badly that I lost the hat and that I was, in a sense littering, but there was no way I was going after it. Besides, there were no sticks long enough and the ground was too marshy. Goodbye hat, I really liked you. Thank you for keeping the sun off my face. I hope you make that gator look better.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

March 25, 2009

Yesterday I showed you two Blue Herons who were either getting ready to fight or flirting with each other (I'm not a heron whisperer). After one of the herons flew away, the other heron walked toward the two Sandhill Cranes and their chicks. This is what happened:

Walking towards the cranes. Full of confidence.

Squawk! Get out of here!

Flap, flap, squawk, squawk!

See you later.

Fly away.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

March 24, 2009

Back to my day at Lake Woodruff National Refuge.

While I was watching the Sandhill Cranes and chicks, two Great Blue Herons flew in and landed on the bank of the water just 10 feet down from the cranes. I was interested in them, so I left the cranes to watch the herons. They were acting quite peculiar, almost dancing. They would face each other and mimic each other as they both walked in circles flapping their wings and puffing out their feathers. The heron on my left (left in the photos) mostly flapped it's wings and when ever the other heron would start walking in a circle, this one would walk in a circle where it was standing. I figured this was either the beginning of a fight, or somesort of mating ritual. But really, a fight or love, aren't they basically the same?

The bird on the right was a bit of an exhibitionist. I called this bird a "him". He opened up his feathers like they were a trench coat and pranced around. It kind of looked like he was a flasher (see below). Hence, why I called him a he. I like his yellow eyes.

The bird on the right (see below) was flapping her wings, turning sideways and putting her wings in the water and keeping a close eye on the other bird. (I don't know it is a her, that's just what I decided to call her).

I wish the photos were better quality. It was interesting to watch. Eventually the bird on the right grew tired of watching her buddy strut his stuff and she flew off. After she left, the remaining heron continued to walk along the shore approaching the cranes. This should be interesting.

Stay tuned tomorrow.

Monday, March 23, 2009

March 23, 2009

This is my entry for i heart faces KIDS category: No Flash

This is my entry for i heart faces ADULTS category: No Flash

Check out the great photos at i heart faces.

March 22, 2009

And now for some gators. They were everywhere along the banks of the water, sunning themselves. I was very careful how close to the bank I got when taking pictures of birds, because I could not see very well what was on my side of the bank. All the pictures are of gators who were on the other side/bank, a distance of six to eight feet.

Lara, I just read your comment. Let me clarify. The water was about six to eight feet wide, with the gator on his side. I was well back from my side of the bank. Besides, the gators were soaking up the sun and not moving, not that I would ever get close enough to get in their way.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

March 21, 2009

Today (Saturday) I spent the entire day (by myself, no kids) at Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge. Besides the fact that a wildlife refuge is named after me ... I wanted to go to see some of the beautiful birds that live there. I was not disappointed. It was fabulous! Oh, and besides the many different kinds of wading birds, waterfowl and birds of prey, I saw lots of gators! Cool.

I took hundreds of pictures. The lighting was not the best and in many of my favorite shots I am shooting directly into the sun, which causes a harsh quality to the photos. I will just have to make the trip again, and soon.

So I will take a break from Ella and her kitty, Ella and her dog, Ella and her blanket, to bring you various birds and gators.

One of the main birds I was hoping to see was the Sandhill Crane. I should backup and say that one of the motivations behind this trip to Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Preserve, was the absolutely beautiful photographs taken by Scott Helfrich. He posts his pictures on Flickr, and if you want to see some outstanding nature photos, go look at his. He has even published a book about the Sandhill Cranes. Add to that my photography teacher is an expert in nature photography, and add to that how excited I was to get picture of the Blue Heron (you can see them here, here, and here), I decided to try to get some photos of the Sandhill Crane.

The cranes were behind some tall brush and it was difficult to see them. At first I could not even see the chicks, then I saw them through my lens. Eventually they made their way out of the tall reeds and grass back to the edge of the water and I was able to get a couple of shots. They are not the best quality photos, but I was pleased to have been able to see them. I think the chicks are about three weeks old.

Friday, March 20, 2009

March 20, 2009