Just a few images from the past week.


This post might be a bit brief from the narrative side.  I couldn’t think of anything to write about more deeply.  We did make a few excursions this past week to do a bit of birding, and get a few photographs along the way.  We did see our first Bullock’s Oriole and Scissor-tailed Flycatchers of the year.  Also the first Black-necked Stilts that we have seen in over two years.  With the level of Lake Nasworthy having dropped three feet, the shoreline is wider and making great habitat for the wading shorebirds.  Here are a few photos for you to see.  I would strongly ask that you read this post by clicking on the link.  Then you can click the images and see some great enlargements.

Osprey

Osprey

I watched the Osprey for twenty minutes, hoping he would turn to face me a me a little bit, but it never happened.

Eastern Bluebird

Eastern Bluebird

The Eastern Bluebird was in the shade a little bit, almost making the face too dark, but I love photographing them.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

The Scissor-tailed Flycatcher was a harbinger of many more to come.  Summer is almost upon us.

Eastern Phoebe

Eastern Phoebe

Spotted Sandpiper

Solitary Sandpiper

Black-necked Stilt

Black-necked Stilt

I love the elegant, gracefulness of these Black-necked Stilts.  Their slender legs are about the size of straws.

Bullock's Oriole

Bullock’s Oriole

The Bullock’s Oriole is the predominant oriole in this area.  The one above was the first I saw this spring.  It was nearly too far away for a decent photo.

Great Horned Owlets

Great Horned Owlets

The owlets were over two hundred yards away, across the lake, high in a tree.  My friend, Julie Stewart, told me about them.  She attempted to photograph them with her 300mm lens, but were almost out of reach.  She thought that with my 150-600mm lens I might have a better chance.  I got the above shot, putting my setup on a tripod at the water’s edge.  Even then, I had to do some extreme cropping, and a little sharpening.  Those tiny twigs in front of the birds made focusing from that distance very difficult.  But thank you, Julie, for giving me the chance.

So, that’s about it for this time.  I love reading your comments, so if you feel like saying a few words, give it a go below.

By the way, the Solitary Sandpiper is number 140 on my Texas Big Year list.

More Images from Eldorado, Texas


I am still editing images from our Tuesday trip to the water treatment ponds near Eldorado, Texas.  Here are a few more for your enjoyment.  All were photographed with my Canon 7D SLR camera and Canon 100-400mm telephoto zoom lens.

  • Black-necked Stilt
  • 1/2500 sec. @ f5.6 minus 1/3 EV
  • ISO 250
  • Shutter Priority
  • Partial metering

  • Pectoral Sandpiper
  • 1/500 sec. @ f13 minus 1/3 EV
  • ISO 400
  • Aperture Priority
  • Partial metering

  • Cattle Egret making graceful landing
  • 1/2500 sec. @ f5.6 minus 2/3 EV
  • ISO 125
  • Shutter Priority
  • Partial metering

  • Hooded Skunk interrupting our birding
  • 1/640 @ f13
  • ISO 400
  • Aperture Priority
  • Partial metering

  • Spotted Sandpiper
  • 1/2500 @f6.3 minus 1/3 EV
  • ISO 250
  • Shutter Priority
  • Partial metering

I hope you enjoyed looking at these images.  Click on any of them to see enlargements.

Black-necked Stilts (Himantopus mexicanus)


One of the most beautiful and graceful of the shorebirds is the Black-necked Stilt.  They are tall and slender, measuring about 14 inches, with unique black and white plumage and long, seemingly spindly, red legs.  They feed in shallow, marshy, and sometime muddy water.  These pictures were taken this morning at O. C. Fisher Reservoir at San Angelo State Park.

Black-necked Stilt

Black-necked Stilts