Well, after a six week absence, I am finally ready to get back to posting. I have my health issues corrected and I am feeling great. Actually, my health problems go back several years, when I had fits of depression, blood pressure issues, numerous IT infections, and finally culminated with skin cancer problems about two months ago that prompted me to take several weeks off. I really need to thank my adoring wife, Ann, for putting up with me and supporting me through all of those years. I also had the support of several close friends, includding Deb and Paul Tappan, Laren Green and many others, plus a host of FaceBook friends who had me in their prayers. But the most important individual was, of course, Ann. If it wasn’t for her, I would not be where I am today. Now at the age of 82, I am feeling much younger.
During the past several weeks, although I was slowed down a bit, I was able to amass a collection of photos during short visits to surrounding areas. I am not going to post them in any particular order, but feel free to click on any of them to see some nice enlargements. If you are interested in any prints, they are available at my on-line store. Prices starting at 17.56. I would be greatly honored if you decide to hang one in your home. If you would just like to have one of my beautiful coffee mugs, check them out here
Okay, let’s start with this wonderful image of a Vermilion Flycatcher.
By the way, for those that would like to know, my basic equipment for my bird photography is a Canon EOS 7D Mk II and a Tamron 150-600mm Gen 2 zoom lens.
I love the Summer Tanagers. Evern the female pictured here, has distinct beauty of her own.
It is migration time in Texas, and the Scissor-tailed Flycatchers are returning.
This is probably a Western Meadowlark. However I am not positive as the Eastern is so nearly identical that I have a hard time discerning which is which.
I was proud of this image of the secluded White-eyed Vireo. Very hard to catch one for a decent photo.
The Lark Sparrow is one of the most recognizable of the sparrows. That distinct marking of the head that reminds me of a football helmet.
The Northern Bobwhite is one of the quail family that is much in abundance in this area. Some of you photographers may have noticed that I have no qualms about shooting at high ISOs. My Canon 7D Mark II handles high ISOs very well. But if there is excessive digital noise, I use a Photoshop plug-in, Topaz DeNoise, that removes it rather nicely.
Great Kiskadees are, or have been, very rare to the Concho Valley. They were practically unheard of around here. But back in late September of 2016, four of them made there way to the Lake Nasworthy area. By late March of this year we thought they had disappeared. But on April 4, Ann and I were cruising around Spring Creek Park. She said that she could hear one nearby. I thought she imagining it, but she opened her iPad’s iBird Pro app. She played the sound for me, and one of them answered and flew to a nearby tree for this shot. I guess they have found a home here.
Sometimes I pass up chances if a bird or subject feels like it is too far away. Such was the case with this Osprey. He was very tiny, even in the viewfinder, but I made sure my camera and lens was firmly seated on my bean bag on my window sill. With spot focusing I squeezed off the shot and it proved to be sharp enough to make a nice enlargement.
This was my first photograph of the year of an Ash-throated Flycatcher. There was a rumor of a similar Brown-crested Flycatcher in the area. I discounted it as it would have been a rarity for here. I don’t know of any recorded, confirmed sighting ever in this area. However, “show me the picture”, and I will believe.
I love the little Kinglets, but they sure as heck really hard to photograph. Always on the move.
Bluebirds. A crowd favorite.
I was lucky to catch this Nashville Warbler when he was showing a bit of his rusty crown, which is usually hidden.
The Chipping Sparrow is another sparrow which is easily recognized.
There are two sub-species of the Yellow-rumped Warbler; Audubon and Myrtle. This one with the brilliant yellow “chin” is an Audubon.
The problem with this Rock Wren is they are very hard to see. We find them in the rocks, or riff-raff, on the side of O. C. Fisher Dam. We know they are there, so we must be patient and watch for movement along the huge structure. Finally, when we get a glimpse, it is easier to track them as they move along the rocks.
This little Bewick’s Wren was singing his little heart out.
I watched this Great Horned Owl patiently for several minutes. I was about 200 yards away so there was no way that I was going to agitate him. I was waiting for him to open his eyes. I moved his head many times but never opened them. After about 15 minutes I gave it up and left the building.
Well, I think that is it for this post. It felt wonderful to be posting again. This particular post has a record number of photos, nineteen. That is the most I have ever published in one post. I hope you enjoyed every one of them.