Sunday, November 27, 2011

Waddling Around

I'm a beginning birder.  An amateur who basically knows that birds can fly. Oh...and they're cool to look at:)  Birders are funny people as well and I have decided that I like them as a group of people....although they can be quite literal at times:) 
Just like the birds, you'll find them up at the early dawn or right before sunset because that's when the birds are active.
Tonight, because I am broke until Friday, I decided to head over to the Sweetwater Wetlands (which is free)with my camera and play around with the settings.  What a difference a season makes!!!!  I counted billions of birds everywhere.  Yeah, that was an accurate account.
I also love how birders will look at how big each others lenses are on the cameras passing size matters!!! Based on your lens size, you'll get a smile and hello. Too small of a lens and forget about it!! You're nobody:)  The lens does matter but the person behind the camera is the one who matters most.
If you asked me what the yellow bellied bird was, I'd tell you it was a yellow bellied bird.  And of course a duck is a duck.  A woodpecker a woodpecker.  A hawk a hawk. And so on and so forth.  I love that I don't know ANYTHING about the whole thing......I just know that I like birds.
So to my birder friends and your blogs, I thank you for your knowledge and details on the .....hobby?  Well it is fun.  Your detailed work  shows me that there is a higher level to achieve and I hope that someday I'll get there.  But for now, I'm just going to enjoy the ride.
Gilded Flicker
As a photographer, my goal was to capture ducks in flight which I partially succeeded at....but the sun was a challenge.....and using a quick hand on the manual focus continues to challenge me on every shoot.
I get lost with the camera around my neck and almost fell into a hole because again.....I was looking up and not looking down.  Dangerous!  Plus, there were birders in positions I would not get myself into.....two of them to be exact, were hiding in the reeds for the incredible shots.
At one point, I forgot how I got to where I did.  I was following the mountain lion tracks in the mud until I discovered I was all alone in the middle of tall reeds.  Several of the reeds were flattened and there was a musky feline smell like something had recently sprayed the area.  I'm good with cats and their smells out in the wild. That was a bit scary and I thought, "Oh great.  My luck, I'll get eaten and pulled into the reeds with no one around to find me!"  I don't own a cell so no GPS tracker.  
It was time to go and the sun had already set.  Those two hours of my day quickly flew did the birds:)


  1. Chris, I must say that your bird photos are captivating. I am new in this myself. The only reason why I haven't posted some of the bird photos I have taken is because I haven't search for the accurate names yet. Perhaps it doesn't matter after all. :) A duck is a duck.

    What is your favorite setting?

  2. One, I know exactly how you feel because I've always thought that we should identify the pics before posting them but sometimes it's the pic that is worth posting. Other people can fill in the blanks if needed. I've physically spent hours on one post and I just don't have the time anymore to do that. My policy for the moment is learn the name of one bird per photo shoot. Eventually we'll both get there:) My favorite setting is the rapid fire shot because with the wildlife it's tricky getting a spontaneous shot without messing with the various settings. For today, I used the sports setting to capture mid air flights.


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