Mona and Muskegon Lake channels, and a sunset
After my hike in P. J. Hoffmaster State Park yesterday, my legs were tired, but I wasn’t ready to call it quits for the day. For one thing, the weather and the weather forecast led me to believe that there was the possibility of a vivid sunset occurring that evening. If that happened, I wanted to be there by Lake Michigan to capture it.
I was only a couple of miles from Lake Harbor Park, which is a city park on the north side of the channel that goes from Mona Lake to Lake Michigan, so I thought, why not zip over there and see what’s going on.
Ducks were what was going on, apparently people feed them, as soon as they saw me, they came swimming over. I’m not used to that, normally I have to sneak up on my subjects, with these, I had trouble staying far enough away to get them all in the frame!
The American Black duck looks just about like a female mallard, but they are bigger, their head has a different shape, and they have a different quack than a mallard.
I know their quacks probably look the same, but believe me, they sound different.
Oh come on now, please quack again so the readers can tell the difference.
Actually, I think that this one is a hybrid, a cross between a true black duck and a mallard. That does happen from time to time. I guess I’m not sure what it is, but that’s my best guess.
There were mallards as well.
The way the late afternoon light was hitting this male made his head look blue, rather than green.
Either that, or I discovered two new species of ducks there. 😉 The almost American black duck…
and the blue headed mallard.
Thankfully there were a few regular mallards there as well.
I strolled the path that runs alone the end of Mona Lake, I watched an eagle hunting out over the lake for a while. It was too far away for photos, but I took some anyway. I’m not sure why I do that, I knew I would delete them when I saw them, and I did.
I did shoot a few of the herring gulls.
The gull has food of some type in its bill, and landed on the ice to chow down, away from all the other gulls in the area.
I was a bit bored with shooting gulls in flight over Mona Lake, so I drove a few more miles to the Muskegon Lake channel, and shot more gulls in flight over Muskegon Lake.
I figured what the heck, there wasn’t much else going on, and practicing shooting birds in flight is always worthwhile. Herring gulls are great practice, there are a lot of them, and they will fly close by, giving you lots of opportunities to practice, so I did.
They may be called flying rats, and some other not so nice names, but I like them.
Bored with the gulls? How about a couple of male red-breasted mergansers?
I couldn’t get close to them. As soon as I tried, they would dive, then pop back up on the other side of the channel, until some one tried to get close to them there, then they would come back towards me. Here’s a female red-breasted merganser taking off.
They have to “run” across the water to build up enough speed for flight.
And when nothing else will cooperate, there’s always the gulls.
It was getting near dusk, time for the sunset. I found a spot to hang out and wait for it, you wouldn’t believe how many people show up right around dusk every night to watch the sunset. As I was waiting, I noticed the moon rising, and flocks of gulls on their way out into the lake to spend the night, and you know me, a moon plus birds equals photo-op!
The sun started to set…
…but it wasn’t spectacular yet. I looked down in front of me, and the dune grass looked as if it was coated in spider webs, taking on the colors of the sunset!
I started shooting..
and shooting some more..
I like them all, lens flare and all.
Then the sun set.
It was an OK sunset, not as good as I had hoped.
All in all, not a bad day. That’s it for this one, thanks for stopping by!