Spent the day at a Rick Sammon seminar and now all pumped up on the photography front. Linda and I have been following Rick for several years now ever since we found his Digital Photo Experience podcast. That audio show is our go to entertainment on our long travels. If you are a fan of photography (a likely assumption based on the fact you are reading my posts), I highly recommend caching their show both from the questions they get/answer and their numerous interviews with experts in the field.
Continuing the posts from the Ft. Myers trip, here is a set of those white angels that get to enjoy the wonderful weather down there on the gulf.
Figured it was time to finally put that previous image on display. I’ve kept it close since it is a special entry in our EddieSoft Gallery. That shot of the Snowy Egret earned me a first place finish AND a Best in Show at the 2013 Knox County Fair (link here). If you know about the competition Linda and I have between ourselves, then you probably know that kept me from having to take the UB title that year!
Hit the jump to see some more pictures of the Great and Snowy Egrets.
Continue reading Ft Myers – Bright and White
Looks like the GPO nomination is shaping up to be an interesting one if not an outright implosion. Seems the conservative populous has initiated an all out rebellion against career politicians. Last night Rubio put up an embarrassing showing, Cruz showed a surprising strong gain and Trump.. well Trump once again put the tremors into the old guard. That would be the old guard that thought it wise to bring Romney and McCain out of the mothballs to attempt to tell us low information voters how wonderful life would be if we just listened to them one more time (I think those pathetic choices that gave us our current administration pretty much speaks volumes for low information elitism). Since politics has a tendency to get my blood boil, let’s turn to something more positive – another +1 in the books:
How cool is that! This shot was taken during my quick trip to Ft. Myers back in 2013. For those of you counting, this makes the third addition to the North American Birding Life list in only two days. I’ve mentioned this several times, but that lagoon in Ft Myers is a treasure trove for birders.
Hit the jump to find out what this bird is and see a few more shots!
Continue reading More Ft Myers Bounty
Welcome back everyone! As mentioned previously, this is dog show weekend so I have an unusual amount of extra downtime to crank out some posts. Since this blog started as an observation on life I thought I’d begin with a funny experience from this morning. I was standing in a pee zone (as I like to call it) waiting for my mother-in-law’s dog to get his business done before rejoining Linda inside the event building. At the same time a lady gets in her car to exit the parking lot. To better describe the setting, there were a number of cars parked in two rows – one row aligned with her and one behind her. The lucky thing for her is she could have backed out straight, missed all cars behind her and been on the road in about 5 seconds. Instead she cuts it sharp out of the space into the small lane between the rows. Of course, that was too short for the vehicle so the next 2 minutes were spent inching out, turning, going forward, inching some more out, repeat a painful number of times. From an observation perspective, that was entertaining, but the real reason I’m relaying this story is a lady came up behind me and quite loudly proceeds to ask; “Why didn’t she just back out?”, “Why would she do that?”, “I’ll feel bad if she hits that car” (by that time the driver was less than a foot from another car). Trying to aid in the situation I tried to give her a visual sign she had plenty of space to come forward and complete the final turn. When I did that, the quizzical lady gets a stunned look on her face and goes “Tell me that’s not your wife!?!” I hesitated because I was holding back a laugh she mistakenly took as a reluctance to say yes it is. This prompted another hopeful plea that it wasn’t my wife. I let her off the hook, but the look on her face when she realized that she may not have probably read the scenario was priceless.
Sorry for that long intro, but it’s nice to get back to my observation roots. During the previous Crane post it was mentioned that there were other wildlife trips just waiting to get attention. Before I can get to those I needed to finish up some pending posts like this one from Ft Myers.
I’ve already jumped the gun a few times on the fruits of that quick Florida trip (link here, here and here). Each of those posts produced +1’s for my Birding Life List. Three new ones is always good for a trip, but the Ft. Myers Lagoon exceeded expectations.
Hit the jump to see more about this bird… and maybe another surprise one!
Continue reading Ft Myers Delivers
Against all my internal warnings I opted to head out to do some Black Friday shopping earlier in the morning. I put full blame on Linda. She was the catalyst for this insanity and she only made part of the overall excursion. It all started at 10:30pm Thanksgiving night when we gathered around the table for our annual perusal of the ads to see what the hot deals were this year and more importantly, compile wish lists for others. At midnight Linda puts the option on the table that if we headed to Target we could get a big jump on gifts for our relatives based on a positive assessment of their ad. We had just come from a trip to see the family earlier in the evening and I got a 6.5 mile run on the treadmill after that .. so sure, why not. By the time we got back it was 2:30am (we hit BB while we were at it). Home Depot opened their doors at 5:00am meaning there was really only 2 hours before I would have to leave the house to get there. Not really tired yet I opted to do that and hit Menards as well – mainly to buy gifts for Linda to give me for Xmas. Those adventures could probably be a post all by themselves (and they likely will), but let’s just say I rocked it, getting essentially everything on my list! Once again Linda owes me (anyone keeping track .. besides myself). The best part of it, I used the 2 hour wait to crank out the last set of pictures for the November quota. My drive is still being restored thanks to the crash but had these images lying around from the UB 2013 prep (link here).
On this last post for November, I introduce you to the Brown Pelican.
These first two shots were in the running for the UB competition but I am pretty sure I opted against entering them in favor of what I thought were better candidates. The courting Willets on the shoreline that were entered that year were from the same shoot. My brother Ron and I were down in Fort Myers, Florida to drive my parents back from their Winter stay. A couple of birding references indicated there was a lagoon nearby that was fantastic for bird shooting. Just meant hauling the 80-200 glass down there to see what they had to offer. It did not disappoint. There will be a multi-post series on the results from that trip as soon as my drive gets restored, but consider this a teaser. Admittedly, we had our doubts while trying to locate the lagoon since it a) isn’t marked and b) is tucked behind hotels lining the shoreline. Sure enough, when we followed the source’s directions we ended up standing on a lagoon teeming with wildlife. Ospreys, crabs, Herons, Gulls and Egrets were abundant – all hanging out around or hunting for fish in the lagoon. My Father rightfully warned us about the potential presence of alligators but we never encountered one (bummer).
Hit the jump and read more about this intriguing bird.
Continue reading The Pelicans of Fort Myers