A Hall of Fame award.


I received a very prestigious award yesterday that I would love to share.  Most of you know that before my photography I was very much into the music scene.  During the 60s, 70s, and 80s I was I was a wild saxophonist, playing with various bands and musicians over the years.  I retired from music in 1986.  Well, the West Texas Hall of Fame decided that I ought to have the Pioneer Award for the year 2015.  I received this plaque yesterday.  I was honored to receive it and glad that they didn’t have to present it posthumously. 🙂

Bob Zeller's Pioneer Award

Bob Zeller’s Pioneer Award

I will be back with some birding and photography posts after I return from a vacation next week.

While I am gone, you would enjoy reading of my musical exploits.  Click HERE.

There are six small and entertaining parts.  That will give you some insight as to why I was given this award.

Baby, It’s Cold Outside…..


Holy Cow!  20° as I begin to write this.  If you can believe this, but at 2:00 yesterday afternoon it was 78°.  By 6:00 it was 30°.  A rip roaring cold front blasted it’s way in.  A good excuse to stay in today and write a post to this blog.  Lot’s of catching up to do.

We have been getting out most every morning lately.  The birding is really improving.  A good sign of that was that a few days ago, Ann and I counted 40 species……..all at Spring Creek Park.   Believe it or not, the Great Kiskadees are still here, or at least until yesterday.  I don’t know if they decided to head south again after last night.  I will keep you updated on that.  Here is my last photo of one that I captured about three days ago.  We were driving through Spring Creek Park and Ann said she heard one calling.  I thought that she was having effects from a glass of wine she drank the previous evening.  She said, “No, it sounds like this”.  She had her iPad turned on and she played the bird’s call.  The bird apparently heard that and answered her.  It flew into a tree right overhead.  I was able to capture the photo before it flew away over the water.

Great Kiskadee

Great Kiskadee

In other news, as I mentioned in my last post, I am up uploading photos for purchase.  You can buy framed prints, or home decor with my photo art.  It makes it easier for you that have wanted to purchase my art.  Click here – http://pixels.com/artists/1+bob+zeller

For un-framed prints, my 2017 Calendars, or my book, “Birds, Beasts and Buttes” contact me at bobzeller@pobox.com.

Okay, I am done self-promoting.  (hey, someone’s gotta do it 🙂 ).  Now onto my images that I have captured for you the past week or so.  All were taken with my Canon 7D Mark II and Tamron 150-600mm Gen2 lens.  Please click on any image to see some beautiful enlargements.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.  1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 1250.

Yellow-rumped Warbler. 1/1000 sec @ f6.3, ISO 5000.

Yellow-rumped Warbler. 1/1000 sec @ f6.3, -0.3 EV,  ISO 5000.

Black-crowned Night Heron, juvenile. 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 6400.

Black-crowned Night Heron, juvenile. 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 6400.

American Kestrel. 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3 +0.7EV, ISO 2500.

American Kestrel. 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, +0.7 EV, ISO 2500.

Belted Kingfisher. 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3EV, ISO 2500.

Belted Kingfisher. 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3  EV, ISO 2500.

Savannah Sparrow. 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 320.

Savannah Sparrow. 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 320.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet. 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 500

Ruby-crowned Kinglet. 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 500.

Hermit Thrush. 1/640 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 1600

Hermit Thrush. 1/640 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 1600

White-faced Ibis. 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 1250.

White-faced Ibis. 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 1250.

Great Egret. 1/1600 sec. @ f10, -0.3 EV, ISO 100.

Great Egret. 1/1600 sec. @ f10, -0.3 EV, ISO 100.

Well, that’s it for this post.  Stay warm.  Merry Christmas and Happy Birding!!!

Do your Christmas Shopping with me.


Since Christmas is upon us, I thought I would give you some ideas to think about.  As you know all of my work is for sale.  So with two weeks to go, I think there is still time to partake of some of my bargains.

First, in conjunction with Pixels.com, I am offering a selection of my photos available on greeting cards, coffee mugs, and some home decor.  Check me out at http://pixels.com/artists/1+bob+zeller.

My hard cover book, “Birds, Beasts, and Buttes” is still available from me.  Featuring about 100 of my best photographs.  Original price 65.00, now with a Christmas price of 40.00 plus 10.00 shipping.  No shipping cost needed if you are in San Angelo and I can deliver it.  Contact me at bobzeller@pobox.com.

My DVD, “Bob Zeller’s World of Outdoor Photographs”.  Another 100 photographs accompanied with great music.  Running time about 17 minutes.  25.00 including shipping.  20.00 for San Angelo residents if I don’t need to ship.  Again, contact me at bobzeller@pobox.com.

I hope you will consider some of these.  The profits help pay for my equipment and expenses.

Okay, if you are still with me after me trying to get into your wallet, here are a few photos from the past few days.  Most of those days were pretty overcast, but today the sun is shining, so things are looking up.  By the way, I am still field-testing my new Tamron 150-600mm Gen2 lens.  I think you will agree that it is a fantastic lens and I should keep it.  Enjoy these images, and click on any of them to see enlargements,.

Great Egret - 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 1600.

Great Egret – 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 1600.

Lesser Black-backed Gull - 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 2000

Lesser Black-backed Gull – 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 2000

Juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron - 1/1000 sec. @ 6.3, ISO 6400

Juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron – 1/1000 sec. @  f6.3, ISO 6400

Adult Black-crowned Night Heron - 1/1000 sec @f6.3, +0.3 EV, ISO 6400

Adult Black-crowned Night Heron – 1/1000 sec @f6.3, +0.3 EV, ISO 6400

Dark-eyed Junco - 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, +.03 EV, ISO 6400

Dark-eyed Junco – 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, +.03 EV, ISO 6400

Loggerhead Shrike - 1/1250 sec. @ f7.1, +0.7 EV ISO 3200

Loggerhead Shrike – 1/1250 sec. @ f7.1, +0.7 EV ISO 3200

American Kestrel - 1250 sec. @ f6.3, _0,7 EV ISO 2500.

American Kestrel – 1250 sec. @ f6.3, _0,7 EV ISO 2500.

That’s it for this post.  I will be back in about a week or so with another.  Until then……

HAPPY BIRDING!!

 

What?? Shoot birds on an overcast day??


I have been thinking about the subject of this post for quite awhile.  Photographing birds on a heavily clouded, overcast day.  Today was one of them.  It reminded me of a close friend that almost refuses to try any photography if the sun isn’t shining.  The way to be sucessful is to forget about the color of the sky.  Think about the subject, your birds, and focus (pun intended) on photographing them, and not on the color of the sky.  If you want to photograph a blue sky, wait for a clear day.  If you want to photograph birds, be prepared to do just that.  You just do what you usually do.  In my case, I shoot shutter priority, set the shutter on about 1000/sec or higher depending on the lighting. I set auto ISO, and just let that exposure float along.  That is basically how I shoot birds regardless of the weather.

I also am prepared to boost the EV adjustment to the right about 1/3 or 2/3 stops.  Sometimes it may be necessary to go higher.  It may produce higher ISO exposures, but what’s the big deal?  Most popular SLRs have no problem with that.  It’s not going to keep me at home.  Like I said, just shoot what you would do on a normal day; cope with the usual exposure problems.  Focus on the birds and let the exposures fall where they may.  YOu will notice also, that in overcast weather, the color is nicely saturated.

On the subject of high ISOs, I know of a photographer that refuses to shoot if it is a high ISO day.  Hogwash!!  What kind of a photographer thinks that.  Not the kind that is very successful.  I hope my friend that doesn’t like overcast days, will think about what I have said, and go give it a chance.  Other than that quirk, she is a talented photographer.

Okay, now that I am through ranting, I will tell you about today.  I woke up with a forecast for the day, of cloudy with a 20% chance of rain.  The forecast held true.  It was very cloudy, looking like it could rain at any time.  In fact, a few times there was a hint of a few sprinkles on the windshield.  But they disappeared in a minute or two.  As usual, I didn’t want to stay home.  I am shooting with my Canon 7D Mk II and a Gen 2, Tamron 150-600mm Lens.  I will post the exposure data along with each image.  Click on any of those images to see enlargements.

We started out at Spring Creek Park at about 8:00 AM.  We were apprehensive about whether we would see any birds at all.  Most of the tiny birds were keeping themselves hidden.  However there were a few other hardy ones.  This yellow-shafted Northern Flicker was in a bush and I was able to get him in focus.

Northern Flicker - 1/800 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3 EV, ISO 6400

Northern Flicker – 1/800 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3 EV, ISO 6400

The resident Great Horned Owl made an appearance again.

Great Horned Owl - 1/1250 sec. @f6.3, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

Great Horned Owl – 1/1250 sec. @f6.3, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

After seeing that owl, we decided to go to San Angelo State Park, since it was pretty wet in and we were driving through some sloppy areas.  The state park provided some more paved roads.

White-crowned Sparrow - 1250 sec. @ f7.1, +0.7 EV, ISO 1000.

White-crowned Sparrow – 1250 sec. @ f7.1, +0.7 EV, ISO 1000.

Northern Cardinal, female - 1250 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 4000.

Northern Cardinal, female – 1250 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 4000.

As were taking a little drive through one of the picnic areas, we happened to glance towards the lake and saw hundreds of American White Pelicans and what looked like hundreds more of Double-crested Cormorants.  In this photo, I decided to change to aperture priority an set the camera to f8 to provide more depth of field, to capture more of this vast armada of water fowl.  This is just a small portion of the crowd.

Pelicans and Cormorants - 1/800 sec. @ f10, ISO 1000

Pelicans and Cormorants – 1/800 sec. @ f10, ISO 1000

That exposure set-up worked out fine, but I made a rookie error and forgot to set the camera back to my original setting of Shutter priority for the rest of the session.  But no harm, no foul, as the following photos came out very nice.  Buy this time, it was getting near noon, but the weather hadn’t changed except for the temperature, which was a little warmer.  Still very cloudy with occasional mist.

Eastern Meadowlark - 1/800 sec, @ f8, +0.7 EV, ISO 1250.

Eastern Meadowlark – 1/800 sec, @ f8, +0.7 EV, ISO 1250.

Curve-billed Thrasher - 1/1000 sec. @ f8, +0.7, ISO 1600.

Curve-billed Thrasher – 1/1000 sec. @ f8, +0.7, ISO 1600.

Lincoln's Sparrow - 1/640 @ f8, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

Lincoln’s Sparrow – 1/640 @ f8, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

As you can see, you can get great photos if you dis-regard the cloudy skies and just take what comes at you.  My ISOs varied, of course depending on whether the bird was in the open or in open shade or in the brush completely.  I came home happily with some good results for my efforts.  One additional thing I should mention, I am not foolish enough to shoot if it is raining.  Cameras and water do not mix well.

I hope you enjoyed this post and the images.  As I said, click any of the images to see some very nice enlargements.

Until the next post, Happy Birding!

More from San Angelo Parks


Since my last post of October 22, I have been complaining about the slowness of the birding.  For the most part that is true.  The high temperatures continue to hang around.  But that never stops Ann and I from getting out and seeing what may surprise us.  As you will see from the following images, there are still great subjects for photography.  For all photos I was using my Canon 7D Mark II with a Tamron 150-600 super zoom telephoto lens. I will accompany each photograph with pertinent exposure information.  Click on any image to see beautiful enlargements.

We have spent most of the week at Spring Creek and Middle Concho Parks.  Both are city owned parks and are both are within the area of Lake Nasworthy.

On the morning of the 23rd we got up early, around 7:00 and headed to Spring Creek Park.  A very rare Rose-throated Becard had been reported and we had hopes of spotting it.  Of course, as our luck usually runs, it was nowhere to be see, and as far as we know it has left the building.  So we will speak of it no more.  However, there are three Great Kiskadees staying around and we always have a look for them.  We didn’t see them this day, but I got lucky and spotted a Cooper’s Hawk.  It flew past the car and settled for a few minutes on a tree branch.  Much similar to the post the Red-tailed Hawk in my previous post.

Cooper's Hawk - 1/500 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3EV, ISO 5000.

Cooper’s Hawk – 1/500 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3EV, ISO 5000.

That was about it for that morning, but on the way out we saw this Osprey lurking near some wetlands, hoping to make a catch.  As you can see, it was ‘photo-bombed’ by a Great Blue Heron.

Osprey - 1/11600 sec. @ f8, -0.3EV, ISO 3200.

Osprey – 1/11600 sec. @ f8, -0.3EV, ISO 3200.

The following morning of the 24th, we were up and at ’em again.  Again, after stopping for a burrito and coffee to go, we got to Spring Creek Park.  Again, we decided to see if the Kiskadees were still around.  At the area where we had seen them in the past, we could here one singing.  After a good look with our binoculars we spotted him high above on a tree top.  A long distance, but I managed to get a fairly decent image.

Great Kiskadee - 1/1690 sec. @ f8, -0.3EV, ISO 2500.

Great Kiskadee – 1/1690 sec. @ f8, -0.3EV, ISO 2500.

Continuing on along the water, we spotted a Black-crown Night Heron.

Black-crowned Night Heron - 1/1600 sec, @ f8 -0.3EV, ISO 6400.

Black-crowned Night Heron – 1/1600 sec @ f8 -0.3EV, ISO 6400.

We then spotted a Cooper’s Hawk again.  Perhaps the same one that we saw the previous day, as it was in the same area.

Cooper's Hawk - 1/1600 sec, @ f8m -0.3, ISO 4000.

Cooper’s Hawk – 1/1600 sec, @ f8m -0.3, ISO 4000.

I love the little Cattle Egrets.  This one was with several others, but I managed to isolate him for a nice photo.

Cattle Egret - 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3EV, ISO 180.

Cattle Egret – 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3EV, ISO 180.

Back at it again on the 25th, still bolstered by our usual breakfast from Jack and Jill donut shop.  No Kiskadees this time, although we did hear them again.  We settled for another photo of a Black-crowned Nigh Heron.

Black-crowned Night Heron - 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3EV, ISO 3200.

Black-crowned Night Heron – 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3EV, ISO 3200.

A Great Blue Heron was nearby.

Great Blue Heron - 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3, ISO 3200.

Great Blue Heron – 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.3, ISO 3200.

On the 27th the pickings were pretty skimpy.  (We took the 26th off.  Man does not live by birding alone). Not much going on, but we got lucky with the Vermilion Flycatachers.

Vermilion Flycatcher - 1/640 sec. @ f7.1, +0.3EV, ISO 640.

Vermilion Flycatcher – 1/640 sec. @ f7.1, +0.3EV, ISO 640.

Vermilion Flycatcher - 1/1250 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3EV, ISO 1250.

Vermilion Flycatcher – 1/1250 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3EV, ISO 1250.

On the 28, we were accompanied by Jennifer and Jeff Koch, friends from Austin.  Needing to make a good impression, we were on our best behavior.  First stop was Spring Creek Park.  Again things were pretty slow.  However, a good shot of a Northern Cardinal impressed our guests.

Northern Cardinal - 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3EV, ISO 6400.

Northern Cardinal – 1/1250 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3EV, ISO 6400.

We had enough there, so we headed to Middle Concho Park, and again on the way, we saw this Great Egret.

Great Egret - 1/1600 sec. @ f6,3, ISO 1250.

Great Egret – 1/1600 sec. @ f6,3, ISO 1250.

After arriving at Middle Concho Park, again there weren’t many of the avian species hanging around.  Dang this heat.  But nearing the end of that park we spotted a bird, really back-lit in the sun.  We couldn’t make out what it was, but I decided to throw caution to the wind and try for a shot.  Remember, I am trying to impress my guests.  I boosted the Exposure Value by a stop and a half.  When looking through the view-finder I had a hard time focusing because of the sun.  Here is the result, after post-processing.  Not fantastic, but pretty recognizable as a Western Bluebird.

Western Bluebird - 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, +1.7EV, ISO 2500.

Western Bluebird – 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, +1.7EV, ISO 2500.

This morning, the 29th, after breakfast at Kenney’s Cafe with our local friends, Gene and Ethel Burger, we decided to go back for a couple of hours.  Again, still not many birds in residence.  But I got two great images that made the day.  First, this image of a Belted Kingfisher is probably the best I have had of this species to date.

Belted Kingfisher, male. - 1/600 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 160.

Belted Kingfisher, male. – 1/600 sec. @ f6.3, ISO 160.

While taking a final drive through Spring Creek Park, we spotted the image of a hawk type bird, far across the water, about 300 yards away and high in a tree.  With the binoculars we saw that it was an Osprey.  Stopping the car and turning off the engine, I put my bean-bag support on the window sill of our car.  With the camera setting comfortably I was able to get the little focus point on the bird.  The Osprey was within some branches and the wind was blowing.  I had to time my shutter release carefully, as when the wind blew the leaves would cover the bird’s face.  I had to wait for the breeze to subside a bit.  Here is the result.  I hope you like it as much as I.

Osprey - 1/1600 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 400.

Osprey – 1/1600 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 400.

So that’s all for this time.  Check back soon for more.

 

‘Till then, Happy Birding!!!

 

Bird activity at Spring Creek Park


The weather has cooled and birding has improved over the past few days.  It is hard to believe that just four days ago on the 18th, San Angelo had a record-breaking high of 97°.  It broke the old record of 92 set back about 100 years ago by five degrees.

So anyway, a few days ago, Ann and I went to Spring Creek to check out the birds there.  What fun we had.  First we came upon a Red-tailed Hawk just as it flew from a tree in front of us.  I quickly watched to see where it landed.  Luck was with us and it landed in a tree about another 150 yards away.  It had it’s back to me and it was back-lit, but I did get this photo as it looked back at us.

Red-tailed Hawk - 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 6400.

Red-tailed Hawk – 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 6400.

A few minutes later, we saw several Cattle Egrets along the edge of the water.  I got out of the car, and keeping trees between me and the birds I tried to get within camera range.  They were skittish and I only managed to get a photo of this one that was slower than the rest.

Catttle Egret - 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 160.

Catttle Egret – 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 160.

As we circled through a horseshoe drive portion of the park, we spotted this Vermilion Flycatcher in a smal live oak next to the road.  It was on the opposite side of the car so I couldn’t shoot through the window easily.  I got out of the vehicle, placed my bean-bag on the roof of the car and got a pretty decent image, if I do say so myself.

Vermilion Flycatcher - 1/2000 @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

Vermilion Flycatcher – 1/2000 @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

Also along the water, we saw a Spotted Sandpiper hopping along.

Spotted Sandpiper - 1/2000 sec, @ f6,3, -0.3 EV, ISO 320

Spotted Sandpiper – 1/2000 sec, @ f6,3, -0.3 EV, ISO 320.

It is always fun to run across a roadrunner.

Greater Roadrunner - 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

Greater Roadrunner – 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

Greater Roadrunner - 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

Greater Roadrunner – 1/1600 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3 EV, ISO 160.

After leaving the park, we saw this Osprey looking out over the water, hoping to see an early lunch.

Osprey - 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3, ISO 1000.

Osprey – 1/1000 sec. @ f6.3, -0.3, ISO 1000.

After having so much fun that day, we decided to return the following day.  Immediately, we saw a Great Blue Heron in the water.  I liked it’s pose and as I turned the car to get a good shooting angle, a large Osprey flew down and scared the heron off.  The Osprey decided to stay awhile and stayed in the water where the heron had stood.  It apparently like the water temperature so it decided to bathe and get itself clean.  It flopped around, shook it’s wings, dove under the water for an instant than shook itself dry again.  It repeated this several times.

Osprey - 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3, ISO 320

Osprey – 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 320

Osprey - 1/2000 sec. @ f6.3, - 0.3 EV, ISO 1000.

Osprey – 1/2000 sec. @ f6.3, – 0.3 EV, ISO 1000.

Osprey - 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 250.

Osprey – 1/1000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 250.

Finally, it took off and landed a few yards away to dry off.

Osprey - 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 800.

Osprey – 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, -0.3 EV, ISO 800.

This whole sequence took place about 150 yards away from my camera position.  In retrospect, I wish I had videoed the whole time.  But I didn’t want to take a chance of missing the whole thing, while trying to set up my camera for recording.  I ended up with about 150 different exposures, and perhaps after reviewing all of them, I may find some more interesting images.

Meanwhile, up in the trees away from the water, this Great Horned Owl slept through the excitement.

Great Horned Owl - 1/2000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

Great Horned Owl – 1/2000 sec. @ f6.3, +0.7 EV, ISO 6400.

We ended our little foray into Spring Creek Park by getting an image of one of my favorite birds, the Scissor-tailed Flycatcher.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher - 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 250.

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher – 1/2000 sec. @ f7.1, ISO 250.

I hoped you enjoyed this post.  Click on any image to see some amazing enlargements.

 

‘Til the next time, Happy Birding!!

 

Something New, Something Old


While trying to get new material, AKA photos, for my posts, the birds are not co-0perating much for me these warm days.  But, having said that, I do have a few new ones that I captured recently, and I will combine them with some older ones from my archives.   A few of them I may have never posted, so even they may be new to you.

First, I would like to bring to your attention an error that I made a few weeks ago.  An alert reader, Carla Savage, e-mailed me and asked me to re-check the ID of a photo that I posted on July 2, as a juvenile Curve-billed Thrasher.  It turns out that it is actually a female Brown-headed Cowbird.  There are similarities, and a friend had insisted that it was the Thrasher.  I took his word, and didn’t take a closer look.  As I said they are similar to each other, however the beak of the bird in the photos, is a bit too thick for a thrasher.  I thank Carla for correcting me.

Now back to some photos.  Here are a some from my archives.

I got lucky one day at the bird blind at San Angelo State Park.  This female Ruby-throated Hummingbird showed up and really got interested int the water dripping from the rocks.

Ruby-throated Hummingbidrd

Ruby-throated Hummingbidrd – female

While roaming along the brush line at the edge of Spring Creek Park, I saw this Carolina Wren perched on a branch.

Carolina Wren

Carolina Wren

And one of my personal all time favorites, I photographed this American Kestrel at San Angelo State Park a few years ago.  Because it was so far away, the image didn’t lend itself to doing a close crop, so I opted for this nearly full frame adaptation.  Somehow, during editing I accidentally came up with this 3D effect.  I don’t have any idea, except a guess, how it happened.  But regardless how it happened, I love it.

American Kestrel in tree.

American Kestrel in tree.

A couple of years ago, during a little drive through Spring Creek Park, we spotted a large dark bird on a branch.  At first we thought it was just a Turkey Vulture.  But as we got closer we realized it was a Zone-tailed Hawk, and it had it’s lunch spread on the branch.  One reason we were initially fooled, is because the Zone-tailed Hawk behaves like a vulture.  It perches like one and flew like one.

Zone-tailed Hawk

Zone-tailed Hawk

A couple of years ago we made a trip to Pedernales State Park.  It is one our favorite birding spots when we want to make little trips out of town.  They have two large bird blinds that make for excellent bird viewing.  This is an image of a Summer Tanager that I got on that trip.

Summer Tanager

Summer Tanager

Now back to some more recent photos, I captured this Northern Bobwhite a few days ago at San Angelo State Park.

Northern Bobwhite

Northern Bobwhite

This Greater Roadrunner showed up on the same trip to that park.

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

This morning Ann and I visited a favorite spot near Twin Buttes Reservoir.  We saw several birds, but the following two photos were really the highlights of the one hour stay.  This adult male Painted Bunting…….

Painted Bunting

Painted Bunting

…….and this juvenile Vermilion Flycatcher, possibly a first year male.

Vermilion Flycatcher - juvenile

Vermilion Flycatcher – juvenile

I hope you enjoyed the photographs.  Click on any of the images to see some nice enlargements.

Happy Birding!!