A novice birder's observation of birds and other natural wildlife with wings ... or maybe not with wings...
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
I was hiking at Rock Cut State Park and noticed this Green Heron sitting in a tree above my head, so I backed up to get a better angle, and he stayed put to let me take his photo (below, 5/2/10).
Last year (5/17/09) was the first time I was able to get a Green Heron in my view finder - the photo below also at Rock Cut State park.
A month ago I was crossing a foot bridge over the Kishwaukee River in Kishwaukee Springs Forest Preserve, when I saw an unusual color in the brush next to the river. I focussed in on it, knew it was an animal, but still couldn't tell what it was. Soon the animal lifted its head - it was a Green Heron struggling to capture a frog. He would lift the frog into air, shake it, then dunk it back into the water. This went on for more than ten minutes. It gave me time to walk back and forth on the bridge until I could find a clear angle for a picture. I probably had already took 20-30 shots , when the heron looked staright at me with his dinner in his mouth, as if to say, "Hey, do you mind? I'm eating!" I took the photo and was happy.
Hello, I have always been interested in birds, undoubtedly influenced by my mother and grandmother. As a young boy I remember paging through my parents' bird books. Both my Mom and Grandma would identify birds by both their songs and their looks. I enjoy nature and being out in it as often as I am able. Being a teacher helps - as I have much of the summer to do just that. I have done some nature and wildlife photography, but until a few years ago I never thought about photographing birds thinking that it would be too difficult - too small and too flighty. After a few thousand photos, my girlfriend suggested that I open a blog sharing some of the pictures that I have taken and hopefully will be taking in the future.
During the 3 years that have been writing this blog, I have graduated from my first camera, a Sony Digital, to my 2nd, a Canon Rebel T1i, to finally my 3rd and current camera - Canon EOS7D. I started with the standard 18-55mm lens, which I soon found was totally impractical. I then purchased a Canon 55-250mm which I used for quite some time, until I bought a Sigma 150-500mm.and finally sold that one and replaced it with a Sigma 150-600mm, my current birding lens.