Tuesday, April 30, 2013


It's been kind of an odd spring and I haven't felt inspired to go out of my way to photograph the flowering trees.  But the few I've come in contact with I have, of course, photographed.  This beautiful tree is at the beginning of the trails at Heinz, my go to place for exercise and wildlife. 

Monday, April 29, 2013


It's a grey, rainy day today so it's good that I'll be indoors all day training for my new part time job.  We went out yesterday for a late afternoon walk hoping to see some owl activity.  It must have been nap time because we didn't see anything at either nest.  So instead here's an image from a few days ago at Hildacy Farm Perserve.

Thursday, April 25, 2013


I encountered these fine fellows on my walk around Hildacy Farm Preserve the other day.  It was cold and dreary but the horses seemed happy.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


In between looks at the owls I've seen a few other birds including this House Wren.  It was quite windy on my last walk and colder than one would like in April, but it's always good to be outdoors. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Just Can't Get Enough

In an amazing stroke of luck there are two nests this year.  These images are in chronological order so they tell a bit of a story.  This nest is behind septa tracks, protected by a fence, and pretty high up.  You can see when I arrived they took a look but then went right back to eating something that was already in the nest when I got there.  After a while mom (or dad??) flew off and returned to settle next to the nest with a nice big rabbit.  She sat there for a bit with it on the branch while the chicks moved as far right in the nest as they could.  Then she flew off with the rabbit for a bit, but not for too long.  She came back to the nest and everyone resumed happily eating.  These guys seem to be getting lots of good food. 

Monday, April 22, 2013


I love the way he looks like he's riding in his own little wooden boat.  This nest is pretty close to the trail so these images are fully cropped but are also my closest Great-horned Owl photos.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Great-horned Owl

My early experiences at Heinz included a Great-horned Owl.  I've been waiting ever since to see a nest with chicks again.  This is my lucky year so you can expect to see more photos.

Saturday, April 20, 2013


I finally got my new 300mm lens but it was too dark and rainy to get any good bird shots.  The good news is that it works and I should be back in business, so to speak.  In the mean time, some flowers.

Friday, April 19, 2013


When I was in grad school my friend Misty kept shaking her head at the way Philadelphians throw their trash around.  Apparently they don't do that in San Diego.  Sigh.  Seems like a lot of trash flows through Darby Creek each year.  When the tide is low it gets hung up here and there, like these cups and bottles.  And you can usually find bits of plastic and paper snagged in the roots and branches of the trees that overhang the bank. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013


The warblers are arriving and I'm still waiting for the broken lens B&H sent me to be exchanged for a functioning one.  I am not a fan of their exchange policy.  Seems obvious to me now that it would have been better to just send it back and order the lens from someone else.  They seem to feel no pressure to hurry it up.  A three day wait (after they get the one I sent back) before they replace defective merchandise.  ARGH.  I called today to state my point of view, essentially that I paid for the lens and have gotten nothing but aggravation and lost shooting days.  Alas, the representative was not moved.  Keeping my fingers crossed that it actually goes out tomorrow.  But I am customer unsatisfied.  In the mean time I've been doing what I can with the short lens. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Brown-headed Cowbirds

It's always fun to photograph rare or unusual birds like the warblers that come through only twice a year.  But this year I'm really turning my attention to the more common birds, particularly blackbirds.  These are my latest efforts to get photos of the Brown-headed Cowbirds display.  I imagine there are some cowbird paintings in my future.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Snake and Bird

The snakes have been out in force for a week or so.  I can hear them slithering away from the trail as I walk by.  And see them everywhere. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

April 13

My mother recently read through my blog books and complained that "a person might not think you even have parents."  At the same time she objects strenuously to being photographed.  She finally agreed to allow ONE photograph (without flash since she has a brain tumor and the flash gives her a headache-another good reason for my camera that takes good photos at ISO 3200!)  So I took "one" photo in which I pushed down on the release button and whirled off about 30 shots.  Haha.  They are pretty awesome, a whole range of expressions, including one pretty awesome glare before she started laughing.  Unfortunately I also started laughing so some of them are blurry.  Anyway, I do have a mother and yesterday was her 66th birthday.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Missing Things

I took the top photo as a test shot and didn't notice the Mourning Dove until I got home.  I took the second photo with my new lens which sadly stopped working shortly after that and is on it's way back to B&H.  This whole camera situation has been a trial.  I swear the new lens stopped work 5 seconds after I told someone that I was "all set."  Hmph.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Feeder Update

I had a few new birds on my feeders recently.  The Harry Woodpecker (still waiting to get a photo not through the glass) and the Chipping Sparrow (totally adorable little bird.)  And not nearly as exciting but still fun to watch, the Catbird struggles to hang on.  The nuthatches (white and red breasted) will be leaving soon.  And one little guy, the Brown Creeper, hasn't been around since I moved the feeder off the tree.  I might need to do something about that.