Posts in Category: nature

White-breasted Nuthatch

White-breasted Nuthatch, Kennebunk, Maine, USA. Another bird from our back deck feeding station. We have a suet feeder in a cage to defeat the squirrels. It took the birds a while to figure it out, but they did. And it does keep the squirrels out of the suet and saves a lot more for the birds. 🙂 Both woodpeckers and White-breasted Nuthatches hang from the bottom of the feeder to get at the suet. Red-breasted Nuthatches, Chickadees, and Titmice go through the outer cage and use the suet feeder inside just as they would if it were free hanging. It is raining today, but I will still try to sit out under the feeders for a while, in all my rain gear and with camera in its rain jacket, just to continue convincing the birds that I am harmless. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.

Chickadee in a time of pandemic

Yesterday, while we hunker down here at home waiting out the pandemic, I spent about 90 minutes sitting under the feeders on the back deck waiting for the birds to stop noticing me. Of course the Chickadees were the first to come in close. They paid me no attention at all. This one took his sunflower seed up to one of the apple branch perches I have bolted to the deck to de-shell it and worked on the seed for a good 60 seconds before flying off. I have a whole sequence of ”working the seed” shots. 🙂 Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent (from about 6 feet). Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.

Florida Scrub Jay

Today, as I pretty much “shelter in place”, we will pop back down to Florida, from January’s trip to the Space Coast Birding Festival, to pick up this shot of two Florida Scrub Jays working the sandy trail at the Helen and Allen Cruickshank Sanctuary in Rockledge. (USA). Busy, busy, Jays are always busy. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. We are not in lock-down yet here in Maine, but I am keeping close to home. I hope to set up in the back yard today to get some shots of birds coming to the feeders. 🙂

Melting

Deep in the forest, the vernal pools are slow to melt. This one has been working on it for weeks, and there is still a ways to go. There is not much water underneath the ice so most of the melt has to happen at the surface. It does make for some interesting abstract images though. 🙂 Sony Rx10iv at 90mm equivalent. HDR mode. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farms, Wells, Maine.

Praying Chipmunk

There is not much moving in Maine’s forests during March other than chipmunks. I did see my first Red Squirrel two days ago, but not nearly close enough for a photo. This chipper appears to be praying at a mossy alter in the March sun, at the Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farms, in Wells, Maine. And well it might be, and well we should join it in prayer in these days of spreading Covid-19. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.

Skunk Cabbage Season

It is the season when, deep in the Maple swamps of Southern Maine, the Skunk Cabbage, in all their twisted shapes and outrageous colors, emerge from the leaf litter. This is when Skunk Cabbage is at its most beautiful. This is the flower of the plant. The big green leaves will only appear later. The wikipedia article on Skunk Cabbage is full of all kinds of interesting information. Skunk Cabbage grows downward, with its stem under ground, and only the flower and leaves sticking up at the top of the stem each year. Even stranger, the Skunk Cabbage produces its own heat, 27 to 63 degrees above the ambient temperature, so that the flower can bloom in still frozen ground…in fact it can melt the ice around it. It is mildly poisonous to humans (its heat is generated by cyanide)…you would have to eat more than a little of the fresh leaves to kill you, but your mouth will burn and your throat close with even a few bites…though with the proper preparation it has been used both as food and medicine.

To me, the Skunk Cabbage is one of the first and most welcome sings of spring in southern Maine.

Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farms, Wells, Maine. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. HDR mode. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos…assembled in FrameMagic.

Unlikely acrobatics…

One of the most enjoyable things about watching Cedar Waxwings, for me, is the acrobatic poses they get into while feeding. This is good example. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos. Roger’s Pond Park, Kennebunk, Maine, USA

Chickadee in the wild

We get Chickadees at the feeders on the deck right outside the back deck doors all year long…but as I have said before, Chickadees “in the wild” are somehow much more interesting than our backyard friends. This one was on the Kennebunk Plains Wildlife Management Area near Kennebunk Maine, USA. Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.

All kinds of strange (and beautiful)

Native phragmites reeds at the edge of the marsh at the Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farms in Wells, Maine. I zoomed out to 600mm and shot the stand of reeds waving in the wind, and then sorted out the most effective shots. Going for the total abstract reality look. 🙂 Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.

Chipper Poem

There is a poem with this, today’s Day Poem.

3/11

The chipmunks were out in force at
Laudholm Farms this unexpectedly
warm March day. The temperature
hovered just below 70, and the sky
was clear and blue. I watched a
chipper scamper in the woods, and
then, becoming aware of me. freeze
at the foot of an adolescent maple…
too big to be called a sapling, but
still small enough to be in its dancing
days in the shade of its elders. Up
or around, I had to wonder, thinking
of the chipmunk, and then, taking
a step closer for a photo, the chipper
dived under (not a direction I had
considered) into a unseen hole where
what will be a buttress root in a hundred
years jutted out from the base of the
tree. I walked on, not wanting in any
way to diminish the chipmunk’s en-
joyment of the rare, fine March day,
especially as it was clearly evident
he had no intention of spoiling mine.

Sony Rx10iv at 600mm equivalent. Program mode with my custom birds and wildlife modifications. Processed in Polarr and Apple Photos.