birds

First Date

It was the noisy squawking that led me to look up and see this pair of gulls as we walked on the Queen Mary. My first thought was that it was their first date, hence the name of this post.


On the Roof

Gulls can sometimes be pretty annoying when you are at the beach, but this one caught my eye as he perched on a rooftop surveying the scene in Newport Beach.


 


Greeting the Day

Good Morning, Sunshine!

What a joy it was to be back walking on the beach with my new knee! It still doesn’t feel “normal”- but I can walk without pain and without poles. And watching the waves and the birds is the best therapy!

At Newport Beach


In Winter

It looked like the Canada geese felt right at home as they paddled through the chilly water on this cold winter day.  It was just Tuesday that Watson Lake was surrounded by white- but now the beautiful Arizona sunshine has melted most of it, leaving white in just the shadiest areas. I have learned to get out and take photos right away here in Prescott, as more often than not, the snow only lasts for a few days. This image was taken with my iPhone.


Stalking

I thought I could see swans from the road last week, so we went over to Willow Lake late Saturday afternoon to see what we could see. No swans were in the area where we had seen them before, but a heron was slowly wading through the shallows stalking his prey. We watched for a half hour or so- but never saw him catch anything. As the light was fading, we walked back to the car, leaving him still searching for dinner.


Can’t get enough of . . .

the swans! It was such a treat to see them in the wild- hope to go back before they fly off somewhere.


Swans!

Friday night, we learned from Facebook that there were swans out at Willow Lake! We are accustomed to seeing ducks, geese, eagles, hawks, herons, egrets etc.- but this is  the first we’ve heard of swans. So on Saturday morning we headed over to see what we could see. This would be my first walk in nature since my knee surgery, so I was pretty excited- so excited, in fact, that when we spotted the swans, I realized I had left my zoom lens on the kitchen counter! And what was on my camera, you ask? My macro lens! So I watched the swans as a hawk perched above them in a tree and a heron stood intently searching the water for his breakfast and tried to content myself with occasional macro shots.

After my genealogy meeting in the afternoon, we drove over again. The swans were starting to tuck their heads under their wings, but eventually all four swam around where we could see them  in the late afternoon light. I haven’t gone through all the photos yet, but here is a shot of three of them.

 


Wading

Spotted at Watson Lake


Peaceful, Easy Feeling

There is nothing more peaceful than watching herons at a lake. . .


I Heart Pelicans

Last week I started hearing about some white pelicans that people were seeing at Watson Lake. I had seen a group (a “brief”, a “scoop”, a “squadron”) of pelicans fly over last year, but I had never seen them by or in the water. So of course, we went over to take a look.

The first day, we got there too late. At five o’clock they were already tucking their heads under their wings, but at 8:30 the next morning, there they were! I didn’t lug my long lens along, so the photos are not stellar, but it was so much fun to see them. Those of you that know me know I am NOT a birder- or even a lover of birds- but I do love water birds, shore birds and herons etc. And pelicans are my favorites!

We watched for about 45 minutes, and then all of a sudden a jerk with a camera strode across the grass right toward the pelicans and off they flew to another part of the lake. *&%#$

I also took some egret and heron photos- I’ll post those another day.

 

 


Blue and Green

We watched this beautiful peacock strut around, and, when his girlfriend called, he spread his feathers and was a beautiful sight to behold!


Very Arizona

Spotted in Tucson- a cardinal on a palo verde tree


Beachcomber

Another peaceful morning walking at the beach. . .

 


Alone, but not

Whenever we visit a beach, I always enjoy watching and photographing shorebirds, which are so comfortable amidst the crowds of people. I managed to get this shot as the crowds momentarily seemed to dissipate by the Huntington Beach Pier.

 


Backyard Bad Boy

I have been home a lot for the last couple weeks and have enjoyed getting out in the yard to watch the hummingbirds. We’ve had more than usual, but the prettier ones (I won’t even attempt to name the species)tend to leave the yard when I go outside. The feeder at the kitchen window attracts several hummers who sometimes (but not often) will feed at the same time. Our larger feeder out on the patio has been dominated by one hummingbird who sits on TOP of the feeder for over an hour at a time, preferring to guard it rather than feed. I have known children with that same personality trait!