I previously worked as a news and sports photographer. Recently I have been enjoying wildlife photography. My approach toward bird photos is similar to sports photography. I attempt to capture mostly action and hopefully a unique perspective.
Yesterday, at late afternoon, we had a few adult brown pelicans come into the salt marsh and begin fishing. Except they were not using the typical brown pelican fishing style which generally involves flying around and then doing an almost vertical head first dive into the water.
There were a lot of small fish in this one area so that’s where the pelicans landed and stayed. So rather than fly and fish, they floated and paddled along the water in circles, occasionally dunking down their head to scoop up tiny fish and shrimp.
After plunging it’s huge bill into the water, the pelican would keep it’s head down while straining the water out of the bill so that only the catch would remain.
I never saw any of these guys snatch anything large, they mostly just came up with small marine creatures that sometimes I could barely see. But they definitely caught things they liked because I could see them swallowing the snack after practically every plunge.
As it began to get dark I had to leave these hard working pelicans, but it was quite an entertaining show for the time I spent watching these large birds feed.
Earlier this week I had this bald eagle do an overhead cruise just above my location.
This eagle is one half of our local mated pair that we’re hoping may have chicks this year.
That should be good news for us as we hope to be able to capture action shots of them hunting for food to feed the youngsters. Bad news for the area coot population though, who have no idea they could become the main item on the eagle buffet!
Earlier this week there were a couple of egrets fishing in the salt marsh during low tide. The egrets don’t seem to be in particularly social moods lately, and when I saw this one jump off, I wasn’t surprised to see him go after the other egret.
He bit the offending bird in the rump and then tried to bite it’s foot but missed as the lucky egret skipped away to safety just in time.
Earlier this week a snowy egret came gliding into the salt marsh, landing among the oyster beds during low tide.
Snowball no sooner hit the ground when he whipped his head around after spotting some movement. Sure enough…he grabbed up a nice little fishie snack for himself. A quick gulp and the snowy had a great start to his lunch!
Late this afternoon we had an osprey come flying in and circle the salt marsh a couple of times. The osprey clearly had his eye on something down there and I saw him hit the water twice but he never came up with a fish.
It was fun and interesting to see this large bird go into a hover mode, and then start the steep dive.
As it was leaving the area the osprey flew in close right over my head. So close I couldn’t fit all of him in my lens. :-)
We had an unusual appearance in the salt marsh this past weekend when a red throated loon cruised in for a brief visit.
This is not a bird we often see so it was a nice treat. The loon floated back and forth in the salt marsh during mid tide while most of the wading birds were sitting in trees or feeding elsewhere.
The loon didn’t seem to be especially timid or concerned about a person pointing something at him, and he got quite close at one point.
Anyway, at least it was something different then our usual sightings of Radar. Not that there is anything wrong with that, and later this week I will be posting photos from today of our egret pal with his new friend. :-)