Easter Sunday 2014 Part I
It’s Easter Sunday, and I was up at dawn to greet the morning. That has me looking forward to my vacation, when not only will I be up before dawn, but I’ll be outside with either a camera of fly rod in hand as the sun pops up over the horizon. Two weeks of peace and quiet, just me and the critters.
It;s probably not good for me to spend so much time alone, but I have come to the conclusion that I don’t really fit in with human society. Actually, I’ve known that for some time, but for some reason, I feel compelled to try from time to time.
The group that went on the “nature walk” yesterday were mostly photographers first, and nature lovers second, or were using the walk as an excuse to shoot photos. I’m more of a nature lover first, who tries to convey my love of nature through my photos.
I love birds, but, I don’t want to sit in a blind behind a 20 power spotting scope all day trying to rack up big numbers, or impress others with the rare bird that I managed to see. Yes, I like getting a lifer from time to time, but as long as I’m around the birds and can watch and listen to even the common species singing, that’s really all that I need.
I love fishing, but my goal is not to land more or bigger fish than any one else, it’s my time to relax and become one with the river that I’m fishing in, and the nature that surrounds the river. If I land fish, or a big one, that’s nice, but as long as I’m out there standing in a river, it’s enough to make it a great day.
I love walking in the woods, but my goal isn’t to cover a set distance, or to complete it in as little time as possible, I want to stroll around taking in the nature that surrounds me. At the end of the day, I want to remember what I’ve seen, heard, and smelled, not how far or fast I went.
I was going to go on at length on these topics, as well as nature and my views on religion, but I don’t have the time to type all of that. For you see, I went to Aman Park early this morning to check on the progress of the wildflowers, and things are coming along just fine, next weekend should be spectacular! I knew that it was going to be a long day, so I carried just the new 300 mm prime lens with the extender. I’ll add very few of the images that I shot there today, because I’ll get even better ones next weekend when I take my tripod and the Tokina macro lens and do things right.
I did just a short loop at Aman Park, then, I went back to the Millennium Park where I was yesterday to do some more “exploring” there. As I said in my last post, I could see areas that I thought would hold wildlife, but they were some distance from the parking lot. I looked for a parking lot closer to the less developed part of the park, but they don’t allow parking in the parking lot that I wanted to park in, go figure.
So, I went back to the main parking lot from where I started yesterday, and walked the mile and a half across the butt ugly part of the park to get to the woods and wetlands. Of course, that meant a mile and a half back to the parking lot again once I was done walking around the good part of the park. So that was three miles just to get to and from where I would have otherwise started my walk. Needless to say, I carried just the new lens again, which actually worked out well. I have no idea how far that I walked in total between the two parks, but it was enough so that my legs are telling me to take it easy tomorrow!
My opinion of Millennium Park has changed some, I got quite a few good photos there today, but I’m not going to walk the three miles back and forth across an old gravel pit to get to the good parts, at least not very often, not when I can get photos of the same species without that boring walk at other places.
Anyway, for the photos. I’ll start with a few from Aman Park first.
Old habits are hard to break. For years, up until I began this blog really, I never really cared what the names of most flowers were, I just knew that they were pretty, and that I liked them. I’m trying to get better at identifying them, but the small spring flowers are like the small wading birds, they all look-alike to me. 😉
On top of that, my memory isn’t what it used to be either. I know that I could scroll through the posts that Allen, who does the New Hampshire Garden Solutions blog has done in past years to refresh my memory, but I don’t have the time or energy to do so tonight.
I really am trying to be ruthless in not posting too many photos, but, that’s not working out too well. For one thing, it seems as if everyday when I go out, I come back with better photos than the day before. Or, I come back with photos that may not be great, but they are of interesting behavior on the part of some bird or other critter.
Hardly a day goes by now that I don’t at least think about going back to the beginning of the project that I’m working on to photograph every species of bird regularly seen in Michigan and start over. But, I won’t. I do have some better photos of double crested cormorants to put into the post that I’ve already done on that species, as you are about to see.
How they are able to perch on tree limbs with those giant webbed feet is beyond me, and when one turned around while perched, it looked as if it might fall.
Notice his buddy paying no attention to what’s going on in that last one.
Whew! Both feet firmly holding on to the limb again. I’m so proud of myself!
This goose and the ducks were watching to see if the cormorant would fall.
I got some fair flying waterfowl images.
The male lesser scaup was showing off for the female, she looks totally unimpressed!
More fair flying waterfowl photos.
And, a red-tailed hawk made a couple of passes over me.
I don’t think that a hawk would take on a cormorant, but this cormorant wasn’t taking any chances, he kicked it into high gear!
You may have noticed that I titled this one part one, I still have many photos from today that I’d like to post. Some are poor quality, of a pair of chickadees doing their mating dance, but I’ve never posted photos of chickadees doing their mating dance, so I’ll have to include them in Part II, along with the best mallard photo that I’ve ever gotten.
So, that’s it for this one, thanks for stopping by!