It was an amazing experience.
If you enjoy photography and getting flight shots, there is nothing better than a bright sunny day, then you can bump up your Shutter Speed and lower your ISO and hope that opportunities will come your way.
This summer has been quite a rainy one, but I was able to capture this male Blue Bird on one of our few sunny days.
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Much chaos surrounds us in this world today. People are having to deal with missiles going off and bombs detonating more and more.
Nature also comes with its set of battles. In my earlier blogs, I spoke of the Flicker Family and how they were happily building their nest, then along came the hostile Starlings and took over the Flickers’ nest.
I haven’t been able to get back to the nest lately, but I have heard through my friend; Joe Tundra, that the battle goes on. Joe has been kind enough to share this photo with me. In the photo, we have the Flicker flying away with the Starling’s egg in it’s mouth. He refuses to drop the egg close by, as though it may destroy his nest, and instead he takes it away in his mouth, like a bomb about to detonate.
Joe has also been kind enough to share this article with me. Apparently the battle between the Flickers and Starlings has been going on for quite some time.
At this particular time I abide peacefully with my neighbors, and that is how I would like it to remain. If this disreputable squirrel has its way, our peaceful state of harmony could be broken.
So, this ball of twine originates in my neighbor’s yard, Mr squirrel brought it over the fence, to our yard, anchored it beneath our patio table and then twisted it around one of our lounge chairs.
He then ran back and forth, filling his mouth with the twine, breaking some off and taking it off to his nest.
Hopefully my neighbor has enough sense to know that I would not try to claim his twine by wrapping it around our patio furnisher.
On this day, I would see a Ruffed Grouse for the first time. I happened to be there with another photographer, and it kept following him everywhere he went. A lady walking her dog along the path, told us it had followed her friend for quite a distance. As if on cue, a man walked by and the Grouse started running after him. I did my best to try to stay out of it’s way. It was on the ground a lot, and at this point, I wondered if it could even fly.
We stayed for a bit, took some photos and headed back down the path, when we heard loud screams coming from behind us. We turned around to see a young man on a bicycle screaming loudly, cursing, and hollering….” LEAVE ME ALONE.” He had just rounded a corner, and I was scared, as I assumed that he was being chased, and was thankful I was not on the trail alone. He rode into a fence, almost falling off his bike. Then he was back on it in a split second and screaming once again, as he rode toward us, but we didn’t see anyone behind him.
So, we were quite puzzled as we stood and watch. Then the other photographer said to me, “O look, look.” as he pointed in the direction of the cyclist. At first, I didn’t see anything, but on looking closer, there was the Ruffed Grouse, his pretty tail feathers all fanned out, flying low and chasing this young lad down the trail and pecking him in the back.
When he finally reached us, he cursed the bird some more. Well we all got a good laugh, and the bike rider went his way, probably never to become a Birder, or Wildlife Photographer.
It was just another day as usual, with The Flickers taking turns removing the unwanted trash from their home. You can see the debris around his head, and the brown, just at the bottom right of the picture.
After a while, Mrs Flicker came by to see if her mate was keeping on top things, in the making of their home.
As soon as Mr Flicker saw his mate, he flew the coop, in search of rest and relaxation.
Off he went.
Then the unthinkable happened. It happened so quickly, that I missed the actual take over.
The Starling must have been observing the Flickers upgrade their home, and he waited till one flew away, then he took his chance at the take over. He flew right into the nest, flushing The Flicker out, and he simply took over their home. The poor Flicker is left on the outside, patiently trying to oust the bully.
So this is how I left the Flicker Family….fighting to keep what is rightfully theirs. Perhaps the battle is still ongoing.
As I spend some time reflecting on last year’s bird migration, I can’t help but think about this year may bring forth.
Some of these images have been posted before, but they also fit into this challenge.
The woods are awakening. A multitude of sights and sound echo the arrival of spring. The Flicker’s voice can be heard most of all on this day. We happened upon this Flicker Family as they are preparing to expand their family.
The male and female Flickers are both taking turns to sit on the eggs. Above, the male Flicker sticks his head out as he awaits the return of his mate. It was wonderful to see these two as they work together, sharing their duties, all for the sake of family.
Now that his mate has safely returned, the male Flicker can now fly off and take a short break. They already know their responsibilities and what it will take to raise their family safely in the woods.
A predator is on the loose. Beware
If you’re squeamish you may not want to look at the next photo!!