A nice (aquatic) end to the year

The past few days have been been profitable birding and photography-wise. I don’t have pictures of the 4th- or 5th-year Bald Eagle I saw the other day, but do I have a number of images I’m happy with, for one reason or another.

First off, I’ve been wanting to get a picture of a Belted Kingfisher for a couple of years. I’ve taken to calling it my nemesis. As soon as I’ve gotten anywhere close to a Kingfisher, it has flown off, chattering as it goes. Sometimes one comes close, looks like it’s about to land, then flies off again, taunting me. (I know. Not really. But it feels like it, at times.)

At last, for the past couple of days, I’ve been able to get some almost descent shots of the Kingfisher. Yesterday, I managed to remain hidden behind some bushes. Today, I found that walking directly toward the bird (slowly), didn’t phase it as much as side-to-side motion. Yesterday’s shots were almost good; today’s shots are better (but I always want more).

Yesterday, as I waited for the Kingfisher to return to its favorite spot, I watched some Hooded Mergansers, looking for a good shot. As I peered through the viewfinder, a Great Blue Heron flew past. I was able to track it and caught a nice (but never perfect) shot as it flapped around the pond.

It might be the light, but I’m struck by the blue-ness of the image.

I mentioned Hooded Mergansers. I’ve probably mentioned this before, but they always show up when the weather turns bitterly cold. With recent morning temperatures as low as 8 or 9 degrees F, I was sure they’d show up. I wasn’t disappointed. In between today’s Kingfisher shots, a male Hooded Merganser came close enough that I could get a reasonable shot.

Finally, I got a reminder today to look closely at the birds I see, and to not make assumptions about what I’m seeing. As I stood near the picnic shelter, I saw a couple of Mergansers in the south “inlet.” I watched the birds and got a few shots. Later, as I sat on the planter looking at other Mergansers, I thought it was odd that one of the birds I saw in the inlet had very white sides, whereas the Hooded Merganser males have brown sides (see above). It wasn’t until I got home and was reviewing my pictures that I noticed an iridescence in the bird’s head, and then noticed that the white went all the way around the back of the head. I then realized I had seen (and photographed) a Bufflehead. This turns out to be my best picture yet of a Bufflehead.

One last comment: I’ve noticed in looking at my posts on my phone, that the cover (or “feature”) image at the top of the post doesn’t appear when viewed on a phone. I recommend, for the best experience, that you view this site on a device with a larger screen.

Like what you see? Leave me a comment.

Follow me to get updates.

3 thoughts on “A nice (aquatic) end to the year

  1. Congrats on capturing the belted kingfisher and the bufflehead! All of these images are spectacular! Yes, your photo really shows the blue in the heron. Awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: