Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Heard, February 2015

One method of shooting wildlife -- the method I usually employ -- involves covering a lot of ground in the hope I run into something.  Yesterday at The Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary I tried a different approach.  I set up at a blind pointed out to me by a very helpful member of the Heard Nature Photography Club for an hour and waited to see what came to me.

It was a very good choice.

Northern Cardinal, The Heard
The best news came quickly -- I finally got the Northern Cardinal shot I'd been hoping for.  Good light, good pose, good background.  I love the combination of red plumage and red berries.

Bushtit, The Heard
After the cardinal, everything else was gravy.  Yummy bushtit gravy, for starters.

Northern Cardinal, The Heard
The cardinals weren't done with me yet, though.  While the branches obscure the body somewhat, I love the light on the eye and the raised crest of this shot.

Carolina Chickadee, The Heard
The chickadees were actually the first to return to the bushes after I settled in behind the blind.  But they don't stay still long enough for me to get a good shot of them.  I was fortunate to catch this one.

Mourning Dove, The Heard
As the sun gradually set, mourning doves came and took up what I assume were their roosting spots for the night.  Beauty in the everyday never gets old.

House Finch, The Heard
Speaking of the everyday, I miss the house finches we had at our home feeders in Colorado.  I hope we'll eventually get more visitors at the ones we have set up here.  It's just taking the locals a while to embrace them.

Northern Cardinal, The Heard
The female cardinals proved more elusive than the males this day.  It wasn't until shade had nearly completely covered the bushes I'd been focused on for more than an hour before one treated me to a halfway decent shot, even with that one branch behind the eye that I just want to reach in and yank out of the way.

As much fun as I had shooting, the best part of my visit was actually getting my first exposure to the photo club.  The members were so open and energetic that I joined before I left.  Looking forward to getting to know them better, and getting back out to The Heard to see more!

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