A few random shots from the week

I didn’t get many really earth-shaking photos this recent week.  However, it was just as much fun, as usual, just to get out, communicate with nature, and see what might turn up.  But I can show you a few highlights.

Earlier in the week I went to check on the nest of Yellow-crowned Night Herons.  They were in the act of fledging, leaving the nest.  This photo is what you might call the class of 2012 picture.  As for most of those pictures that I had obtained, the lighting was difficult.  But thankful for a little fill-flash and post editing I managed to get an acceptable image.

fledged Yellow-crowned Night Herons
Class of ’12

I went back a few hours later and the birds were away from the nest completely.  I searched the big trees and found that they were scattered among the branches.  I also discovered another previously unseen nest, containing some more newborn.  I will leave it alone as it is far too high in the way and deep in the foliage to attempt any photograph.

Common Nighthawk

From there we went out by Twin Buttes Reservoir.  We hadn’t been out there in quite some time as, because like O. C. Fisher Reservoir, the water was pretty scarce.  As we drove through the area, we spotted this Common Nighthawk perched in a shady spot on a tree limb.

In mid-week we decided to make a run through Spring Creek and Middle Concho Parks.  Again nothing that was outstanding, but we happened to be there later in the heat of the day.  We’re talking nearly 100 degrees and the birds were smarter than us.  However, I photographed this Green Heron feeding in a small inlet of the river.  He was so unaware that I was able to nearly fill the frame with this shot.  I barely needed to do any cropping.  I was only about 35 feet away, shooting from my car window.

Green Heron

On Thursday, the day began with cloudy skies, cooler with a possibility of showers.  We had planned on making a trip to Eden, Texas, about 40 miles to our southeast.  We had read about a man that took it upon himself to beautify some land and build what he calls, a butterfly garden.  It was beautiful, full of all kinds of blooming shrubs, cacti and numerous tiny pools.  It should have been a natural haven teeming with birds, but by the time we arrived the weather had really cooled, and light rain was coming down.

We decided that we didn’t want to spend too much time there, but planned on returning at a later date.  We decided that there was time to make a run across to Eldorado, a distance of about 70 miles to the water treatment ponds there.  There is always something to see there.  The weather had cleared in that area, but it was very, very windy.  The large ponds of water actually had whitecaps on them.  Most of the water fowl was making use of the protection of the lee of the banks.  But we did catch sight of a couple of Redheads in open water.  I got this shot of one about 200 feet away.  It could have been a bit better if I would have had time to re-adjust my shutter speed for the action.  I really had to do a bunch of tweaking in my post editing to produce this image.


So we will wait and see what next week will bring, but I hope everyone enjoyed seeing these photographs.  You may click on any image to see an enlargement.