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Stephen Ingraham

Stephen Ingraham 

Christian, birder, photographer, blogger...

Occupation: Retired. Senior Brand Advocate for Birding and Wildlife Observation: Carl Zeiss Sports Optics (Photographer (nature & landscape), Blogger)

Location: Kennebunk ME

Followers: 55,989

Following: 3,623

Views: 89,707,033

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Activity

Average numbers for the latest posts (max. 50 posts, posted within the last 4 weeks)

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comments per post
5
reshares per post
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Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 18

posted image

2016-04-26 13:05:46 (18 comments; 22 reshares; 290 +1s)Open 

Dawn on the beach across from out Airbnb house in St. Augustine Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Most reshares: 22

posted image

2016-04-26 13:05:46 (18 comments; 22 reshares; 290 +1s)Open 

Dawn on the beach across from out Airbnb house in St. Augustine Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Most plusones: 290

posted image

2016-04-26 13:05:46 (18 comments; 22 reshares; 290 +1s)Open 

Dawn on the beach across from out Airbnb house in St. Augustine Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Latest 50 posts

posted image

2016-04-30 14:14:51 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s)Open 

Landing. Egret
Coming in for a landing, calling all the way. Great Egret, St Augustine Alligator Farm wild bird rookery, on St Augustine Florida. A Great Egret is one of the most graceful of the big birds in flight…not so much in landing. 🙂

Nikon P900 in my custom Birds in Flight mode. Shutter preferred. 1/1250th @ ISO 125 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom and assembled in Coolage.



Landing. Egret
Coming in for a landing, calling all the way. Great Egret, St Augustine Alligator Farm wild bird rookery, on St Augustine Florida. A Great Egret is one of the most graceful of the big birds in flight…not so much in landing. 🙂

Nikon P900 in my custom Birds in Flight mode. Shutter preferred. 1/1250th @ ISO 125 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom and assembled in Coolage.

___

posted image

2016-04-30 10:37:13 (0 comments; 6 reshares; 95 +1s)Open 

Wet savannah, GTM Estuarine Research Reserve, St. Augustine FL. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. 

Wet savannah, GTM Estuarine Research Reserve, St. Augustine FL. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. ___

posted image

2016-04-30 10:30:32 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 12 +1s)Open 

Landing. Egret
Coming in for a landing, calling all the way. Great Egret, St Augustine Alligator Farm wild bird rookery, on St Augustine Florida. A Great Egret is one of the most graceful of the big birds in flight…not so much in landing. 🙂

Nikon P900 in my custom Birds in Flight mode. Shutter preferred. 1/1250th @ ISO 125 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom and assembled in Coolage.



Landing. Egret
Coming in for a landing, calling all the way. Great Egret, St Augustine Alligator Farm wild bird rookery, on St Augustine Florida. A Great Egret is one of the most graceful of the big birds in flight…not so much in landing. 🙂

Nikon P900 in my custom Birds in Flight mode. Shutter preferred. 1/1250th @ ISO 125 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom and assembled in Coolage.

___

posted image

2016-04-29 17:45:47 (3 comments; 0 reshares; 20 +1s)Open 

April 29

Wood Storks and Great Egrets, two
big birds, are just about constantly
in the air at the St Augustine Alligator
Farm wild bird rookery, coming and
going, two and fro, carrying branches
as nest offerings, or food for nestlings,
and the temptation is to try for them all,
to have the camera swinging overhead
until your back cries out, "enough all
ready" and your head spins a bit from
the motion and the hot Florida sun.

And of course you know that even
when you manage to catch the bird
in flight within the frame, most every
shot is going to be out of focus or
motion blurred, fit only for the digital
scrap heap. Still if one in 50 satisfies,
it is worth it...the wonder of flight
captured, the feathers spread to
cup the wind, lit from within, bodies
suspended... more »

April 29

Wood Storks and Great Egrets, two
big birds, are just about constantly
in the air at the St Augustine Alligator
Farm wild bird rookery, coming and
going, two and fro, carrying branches
as nest offerings, or food for nestlings,
and the temptation is to try for them all,
to have the camera swinging overhead
until your back cries out, "enough all
ready" and your head spins a bit from
the motion and the hot Florida sun.

And of course you know that even
when you manage to catch the bird
in flight within the frame, most every
shot is going to be out of focus or
motion blurred, fit only for the digital
scrap heap. Still if one in 50 satisfies,
it is worth it...the wonder of flight
captured, the feathers spread to
cup the wind, lit from within, bodies
suspended against the sky...the beauty
and the simple rush of, against all odds,
catching even one shot of a bird in flight.

___

posted image

2016-04-29 11:25:50 (6 comments; 12 reshares; 227 +1s)Open 

Gauna River, GMT Estuarine Research Reserve, Florida. A "hard" cloud sky. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. 

Gauna River, GMT Estuarine Research Reserve, Florida. A "hard" cloud sky. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. ___

posted image

2016-04-29 11:15:33 (1 comments; 3 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

Feed me! Great Egret chicks.
The Florida Birding and Photo Fest is a week later this year than last, and you can really see it in the age of the Great Egret nestlings. Last year there were many nests of newly hatched Egrets. This year, some of the nestlings are ready to fledge. This is another of the “laugh-right-out-loud” images that yesterday’s Day Poem was based on. When I first pulled it up for processing, I did indeed laugh out loud. 🙂

Nikon P900 at 1100mm equivalent field of view. 1/800th @ ISO 100 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom.

This is the Day Poem I mentioned.

Sometimes when processing my pictures
after a long day of shooting,
an image will pop up on my tablet
that makes me laugh out loud.

It is delight, pure and simple.

It may be a bird in an odd pose
or a chipmunk looking clownish…
it may be theway the cl... more »

Feed me! Great Egret chicks.
The Florida Birding and Photo Fest is a week later this year than last, and you can really see it in the age of the Great Egret nestlings. Last year there were many nests of newly hatched Egrets. This year, some of the nestlings are ready to fledge. This is another of the “laugh-right-out-loud” images that yesterday’s Day Poem was based on. When I first pulled it up for processing, I did indeed laugh out loud. 🙂

Nikon P900 at 1100mm equivalent field of view. 1/800th @ ISO 100 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom.

This is the Day Poem I mentioned.

Sometimes when processing my pictures
after a long day of shooting,
an image will pop up on my tablet
that makes me laugh out loud.

It is delight, pure and simple.

It may be a bird in an odd pose
or a chipmunk looking clownish…
it may be the way the clouds paint
the landscape with shadow, or
an unguarded expression caught
unaware on a familiar face…some
chance juxtaposition of unlikely
elements within the frame…some
fraction of a second frozen and held
up for our attention, our admiration,
our amusement and delight. That
is the real power of photography… to
wake our wonder, our compassion, our
soul, by a gentle tugging on the eye.

Those laugh-out-loud-images are
what keep me out and about daily
with a camera in my hand.
___

posted image

2016-04-29 00:16:21 (2 comments; 0 reshares; 27 +1s)Open 

April 28

Sometimes when processing my
pictures after a long day of shooting,
an image will pop up on my tablet
that makes me laugh out loud.

It is delight, pure and simple.

It may be a bird in an odd pose
or a chipmunk looking clownish...
it may be the way the clouds paint
the landscape with shadow, or
an unguarded expression caught
unaware on a familiar face...some
chance juxtaposition of unlikely
elements within the frame...some
fraction of a second frozen and held
up for our attention, our admiration,
our amusement and delight. That
is the real power of photography... to
wake our wonder, our compassion, our
soul, by a gentle tugging on the eye.

Those laugh-out-loud-images are
what keep me out and about daily
with a camera in my hand.



April 28

Sometimes when processing my
pictures after a long day of shooting,
an image will pop up on my tablet
that makes me laugh out loud.

It is delight, pure and simple.

It may be a bird in an odd pose
or a chipmunk looking clownish...
it may be the way the clouds paint
the landscape with shadow, or
an unguarded expression caught
unaware on a familiar face...some
chance juxtaposition of unlikely
elements within the frame...some
fraction of a second frozen and held
up for our attention, our admiration,
our amusement and delight. That
is the real power of photography... to
wake our wonder, our compassion, our
soul, by a gentle tugging on the eye.

Those laugh-out-loud-images are
what keep me out and about daily
with a camera in my hand.

___

posted image

2016-04-28 11:15:09 (4 comments; 15 reshares; 117 +1s)Open 

Roseate Spoonbill. Angel unawares
In April, May, and into June, the wild bird rookery at the St Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park in St Augustine, Florida ranks among the top attractions nationwide for wildlife photographers. Hundreds of pairs of nesting birds, Wood Storks; Great, Snowy, and Cattle Egrets; Tricolored and Little Blue Herons; and increasing numbers of Roseate Spoonbills, translate to constant action. Birds on the nest, birds building nests, birds feeding young, birds displaying and posing, birds constantly in the air, going off to feed or bringing in nesting materials. And, of course, hundreds of big and small bull Alligators in the waters below the nesting trees. It is, to put it mildly, spectacular. I have the privilege of teaching Point and Shoot Nature Photography workshops at the Florida Birding and Photo Fest each year in April, so I get to visit the Farm at the... more »

Roseate Spoonbill. Angel unawares
In April, May, and into June, the wild bird rookery at the St Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park in St Augustine, Florida ranks among the top attractions nationwide for wildlife photographers. Hundreds of pairs of nesting birds, Wood Storks; Great, Snowy, and Cattle Egrets; Tricolored and Little Blue Herons; and increasing numbers of Roseate Spoonbills, translate to constant action. Birds on the nest, birds building nests, birds feeding young, birds displaying and posing, birds constantly in the air, going off to feed or bringing in nesting materials. And, of course, hundreds of big and small bull Alligators in the waters below the nesting trees. It is, to put it mildly, spectacular. I have the privilege of teaching Point and Shoot Nature Photography workshops at the Florida Birding and Photo Fest each year in April, so I get to visit the Farm at the height of the season. And I often get to introduce new people to the farm. That is really fun!

This is a Roseate Spoonbill on its way in to the nesting area, maybe 40 feet overhead. The lighting was ideal, the camera functioned well, and my timing was close enough to catch this angel unawares.

Nikon P900 at 300mm equivalent field of view. Sports mode. 1/800th @ ISO 100 @ f5. Processed and cropped slightly for scale in Lightroom.

___

posted image

2016-04-28 11:11:47 (2 comments; 9 reshares; 177 +1s)Open 

Coquina rock (shell rock) on the beach at Washington Oaks Gardens State Park in Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Coquina rock (shell rock) on the beach at Washington Oaks Gardens State Park in Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

2016-04-28 00:29:53 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 1 +1s)Open 

April 27

I went to the Alligator Farm twice
today...early to lead a workshop,
and late to catch the afternoon/
evening light on the rookery and
the nesting birds. It is a magical
place, early or late, with 30 nests
of Roseate Spoonbills, 100 nests
Snowy and Great Egrets, 30 nests
of Wood Storks, and that many of
Tricolored Herons, and maybe 8
or 9 of Little Blue Herons...many
of the nests with a clutch of young,
from hatchlings to fledglings...and that
is not to mention 100 or more big bull
alligators vying for attention, roaring
in the morning, deep enough to vibrate
the boardwalk where 100 or more
photographers stand, early and late,
or where twice that many tourists
traipse all day long, oohing and ahhing,
while the majestic birds fly feet above
their heads carrying nesting... more »

April 27

I went to the Alligator Farm twice
today...early to lead a workshop,
and late to catch the afternoon/
evening light on the rookery and
the nesting birds. It is a magical
place, early or late, with 30 nests
of Roseate Spoonbills, 100 nests
Snowy and Great Egrets, 30 nests
of Wood Storks, and that many of
Tricolored Herons, and maybe 8
or 9 of Little Blue Herons...many
of the nests with a clutch of young,
from hatchlings to fledglings...and that
is not to mention 100 or more big bull
alligators vying for attention, roaring
in the morning, deep enough to vibrate
the boardwalk where 100 or more
photographers stand, early and late,
or where twice that many tourists
traipse all day long, oohing and ahhing,
while the majestic birds fly feet above
their heads carrying nesting materials
and food to their waiting mates.

It is a test of stamina, standing, swinging
the camera, trying to be aware of every
movement, every photo op the birds offer,
trying to make the most of this yearly visit,
these few short days. The early evening
Florida sun bakes me through my Tilly
hat, and I stay until my feet can take no
more...then drive back to our Airbnb,
stopping at the Public for a half gallon
of ice cream...a certain restorative, butter
pecan. Carol and I sit on the couch and
eat, while we look at the Alligator Farm
keepers from the morning shoot, and I
rest my weary feet and unkink my back.

I know my dreams will be full of Wood
Storks and Egrets swooping too fast
through my field of view, carrying nesting
offerings like olive branches before them.

___

posted image

2016-04-27 15:28:52 (2 comments; 3 reshares; 187 +1s)Open 

A landscape detail. Live Oak at Washington Oaks Garden State Park, Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V.

A landscape detail. Live Oak at Washington Oaks Garden State Park, Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V.___

posted image

2016-04-27 10:58:22 (4 comments; 5 reshares; 40 +1s)Open 

Gopher Tortoise
This is the business end of what I think is a large Gopher Tortoise that was crossing the road on the way into Washington Oaks Gardens State Park in Florida when we visited yesterday. I lead a photo excursion there on Sunday with the Florida Birding and Photo Fest and need to “scout”.

This turtle was fast and fearless. And hungry. It was eating some herb growing in the grass of the median. This shot was taken from inches away.

Sony HX90V at 100mm equivalent field of view. 1/320th @ ISO 80 @ f5. Processed in Lightroom.



Gopher Tortoise
This is the business end of what I think is a large Gopher Tortoise that was crossing the road on the way into Washington Oaks Gardens State Park in Florida when we visited yesterday. I lead a photo excursion there on Sunday with the Florida Birding and Photo Fest and need to “scout”.

This turtle was fast and fearless. And hungry. It was eating some herb growing in the grass of the median. This shot was taken from inches away.

Sony HX90V at 100mm equivalent field of view. 1/320th @ ISO 80 @ f5. Processed in Lightroom.

___

2016-04-27 01:19:25 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 2 +1s)Open 

April 26

I am not sure they know what an
apple, a real apple, is here in Florida.

Red or green, firm of flesh,
tart on the tongue no matter
how sweet, so crisp they crack
when you bite off a chunk,
so full of good juice that
when you just break the skin
with a tooth, it bubbles up like
a spring of apple essence...
and the smell...taste's spirit...
catching the back of the throat
so hard you have to swallow.

An apple is not this Florida fruit,
mealy and bland, and they have
the nerve to charge twice what we
pay in Maine for the real thing!

But then, most any Floridian might feel
the same way about Maine oranges. 

April 26

I am not sure they know what an
apple, a real apple, is here in Florida.

Red or green, firm of flesh,
tart on the tongue no matter
how sweet, so crisp they crack
when you bite off a chunk,
so full of good juice that
when you just break the skin
with a tooth, it bubbles up like
a spring of apple essence...
and the smell...taste's spirit...
catching the back of the throat
so hard you have to swallow.

An apple is not this Florida fruit,
mealy and bland, and they have
the nerve to charge twice what we
pay in Maine for the real thing!

But then, most any Floridian might feel
the same way about Maine oranges. ___

posted image

2016-04-26 13:05:46 (18 comments; 22 reshares; 290 +1s)Open 

Dawn on the beach across from out Airbnb house in St. Augustine Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Dawn on the beach across from out Airbnb house in St. Augustine Florida. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-26 12:46:54 (3 comments; 9 reshares; 63 +1s)Open 

Morning shells
We are in St. Augustine Florida for the Florida Birding and Photo Fest where I will lead a series of Point and Shoot Nature Photography workshops. This is shells in the dawn light on the beach across from our Airbnb...a lovely house which we share with a few other guests.

Sony HX90V in-camera HDR. Processed in Lightroom. 

Morning shells
We are in St. Augustine Florida for the Florida Birding and Photo Fest where I will lead a series of Point and Shoot Nature Photography workshops. This is shells in the dawn light on the beach across from our Airbnb...a lovely house which we share with a few other guests.

Sony HX90V in-camera HDR. Processed in Lightroom. ___

2016-04-25 18:10:17 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s)Open 

April 25

Carol and I on our way to St Augustine
for the Florida Birding and Photo Fest,
layed-over in Philadelphia for three hours,
eating Burrito Elito No-Meatos, and using
a lot of napkins...not at all used to Elito
sized portions...no supper needed...but
tasty, oh my yes: grilled veg, rice, black beans,
and some spicy hot sauce that tempts the
tongue to finish, to finish it all, even as the
stomach suggests leaving some for later.

I will get up and walk in a moment, lest
the the next flight find me oblivious...
still wrapped deep in the digestion coma.

Three hours is long enough, thank you
very much, to be layed-over in Philadelphia.



April 25

Carol and I on our way to St Augustine
for the Florida Birding and Photo Fest,
layed-over in Philadelphia for three hours,
eating Burrito Elito No-Meatos, and using
a lot of napkins...not at all used to Elito
sized portions...no supper needed...but
tasty, oh my yes: grilled veg, rice, black beans,
and some spicy hot sauce that tempts the
tongue to finish, to finish it all, even as the
stomach suggests leaving some for later.

I will get up and walk in a moment, lest
the the next flight find me oblivious...
still wrapped deep in the digestion coma.

Three hours is long enough, thank you
very much, to be layed-over in Philadelphia.

___

posted image

2016-04-25 10:45:16 (5 comments; 15 reshares; 184 +1s)Open 

The bend in Branch Brook, Rachel Carson NWR. Sweep panorama. Sony HX90V. Processed for HDR effect in Lightroom.

The bend in Branch Brook, Rachel Carson NWR. Sweep panorama. Sony HX90V. Processed for HDR effect in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-25 10:38:48 (8 comments; 3 reshares; 125 +1s)Open 

Chipper comes close
This bold little Chipmunk at the Wells National Estuarine Research Center at Laudholm Farms in Wells Maine apparently thought he could drive me off if he got close enough. He steadily advanced around the base of a tree. Here he is about 8 feet away, and I had to zoom back to get his full body in the frame. I already had my close focusing P610 out, having just photographed an Spring Azure Butterfly. The light was really lovely.

Nikon P610 at 900mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ ISO 160 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom.

Chipper comes close
This bold little Chipmunk at the Wells National Estuarine Research Center at Laudholm Farms in Wells Maine apparently thought he could drive me off if he got close enough. He steadily advanced around the base of a tree. Here he is about 8 feet away, and I had to zoom back to get his full body in the frame. I already had my close focusing P610 out, having just photographed an Spring Azure Butterfly. The light was really lovely.

Nikon P610 at 900mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ ISO 160 @ f5.6. Processed in Lightroom.___

2016-04-24 14:18:52 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 4 +1s)Open 

April 24

I opened my email this morning
to find a Chase Card Fraud Alert
staring up at me...not what you
want to see the day before 3 weeks
of travel. Called them, and indeed
someone had charged a $1.00 to
and known fraud site, just testing
my vulnerability. I have no idea
how they got my number. Happily, 
Chase is on the case...and flagged it.

Now I get a new number, and
new card, via mail while I am
far from home in Florida. I have 
another card I can use in the 
meantime, so that's all good.

But now, when I get back, there
is the long routine of finding all my 
auto-pays and updating. Might be a 
good time to review my subscriptions 
to see what I really need and not.

And I am certainly thankful, despite the 
unwelcome hassle, that Chase is so alert, so vi... more »

April 24

I opened my email this morning
to find a Chase Card Fraud Alert
staring up at me...not what you
want to see the day before 3 weeks
of travel. Called them, and indeed
someone had charged a $1.00 to
and known fraud site, just testing
my vulnerability. I have no idea
how they got my number. Happily, 
Chase is on the case...and flagged it.

Now I get a new number, and
new card, via mail while I am
far from home in Florida. I have 
another card I can use in the 
meantime, so that's all good.

But now, when I get back, there
is the long routine of finding all my 
auto-pays and updating. Might be a 
good time to review my subscriptions 
to see what I really need and not.

And I am certainly thankful, despite the 
unwelcome hassle, that Chase is so alert, 
so vigilant on my behalf. Next time it 
would not have been a solitary dollar. ___

posted image

2016-04-24 13:51:21 (2 comments; 7 reshares; 229 +1s)Open 

I am always amazed at just how tropical the waters of southern Maine can look. Wells Harbor, Maine. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V.

I am always amazed at just how tropical the waters of southern Maine can look. Wells Harbor, Maine. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V.___

posted image

2016-04-24 13:37:32 (1 comments; 3 reshares; 43 +1s)Open 

In-town Black-crowned Night Heron
“If your eye is generous, your whole being is full of light!” Jesus

I am pretty sure this Black-crowned Night Heron has nested at Factory to Pasture Pond for at least four years. At the very least, I have seen it (or another BCNH) there, spring and summer, for each of those years. Now Factory to Pasture Pond is my own name for the place, and it makes it sound much grander than it is. It is actually just a little wetland caught between Factory to Pasture Road and two paved parking lots…the remnant, perhaps of a more extensive wetland that was bisected by the road and contained by pavement years ago. I visit it regularly for dragonflies in the summer. There are turtles, and, at least arguably, Black-crowned Night Herons, and a variety of other common nesting birds…but it is surrounded by factory buildings on 3 sides. By August, in a hot drysummer,... more »

In-town Black-crowned Night Heron
“If your eye is generous, your whole being is full of light!” Jesus

I am pretty sure this Black-crowned Night Heron has nested at Factory to Pasture Pond for at least four years. At the very least, I have seen it (or another BCNH) there, spring and summer, for each of those years. Now Factory to Pasture Pond is my own name for the place, and it makes it sound much grander than it is. It is actually just a little wetland caught between Factory to Pasture Road and two paved parking lots…the remnant, perhaps of a more extensive wetland that was bisected by the road and contained by pavement years ago. I visit it regularly for dragonflies in the summer. There are turtles, and, at least arguably, Black-crowned Night Herons, and a variety of other common nesting birds…but it is surrounded by factory buildings on 3 sides. By August, in a hot dry summer, it can shrink by a third, but it is a year round pond. And it is only a few blocks from Main Street Kennebunk…definitely “in-town”…not exactly urban, since we are talking a village of 5612 here, but pretty close. 5612 humans and at least two Black-crowned Night Herons. 🙂

I am always amazed at how resilient the creation is. We can pave it. We can cover it over with factory buildings and our houses. We can till it and plant all manner of intensive crops. We can ditch and drain wetlands. We can channelize rivers. We can rearrange and manage the landscape to meet our needs and purposes. But creation, what we call nature, always finds a way back in. Roots crack pavement. Water seeps under roads. Silt fills channels and willows and cattails grow. Great Horned Owls nest in cemeteries. Black-crowned Night Herons nest in parks and on golf courses…and in tiny remnant wetlands right in town. The generous eye sees all this reclaiming of the space we think of as our own, as human space, as a good thing. Creation refusing to take no for an answer. Creation reminding us, always, that we a part and parcel of all that lives, and that all that lives is essential to our being…to our being filled with light and life and hope.

So, seeing the Black-crowned Night Heron at Factory to Pasture Pond in down-town Kennebunk delights me. It is what the generous eye delights to see. Happy Sunday!___

posted image

2016-04-23 21:58:30 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s)Open 

April 23

It seems this week in Southern Maine
that no two Cardinals are singing exactly
the same song. I celebrated a bird I
heard at Rachel Carson a few days ago
in a poem. Cheer. Cheer. Cheer.
chick. chick. chick. Clean and clear,
simple, unpretentious...and then,
not an hour ago, by the little pond
off Factory to Pasture Road here
in town, a bird gave voice to this
amazing rising trill, loud, long, and over
and over. Complexity itself. I had never heard
the like. I had to let my ears lead my eyes
to see what it was for myself...surely not
another Cardinal...but there, high in the
bare branches of the tall Maple, among
the tiny flowers, the red bird sang.

I even remembered to hit record on
the camera, so I have the evidence.

I wish I knew more about Cardinal song.
I wish I knew... more »

April 23

It seems this week in Southern Maine
that no two Cardinals are singing exactly
the same song. I celebrated a bird I
heard at Rachel Carson a few days ago
in a poem. Cheer. Cheer. Cheer.
chick. chick. chick. Clean and clear,
simple, unpretentious...and then,
not an hour ago, by the little pond
off Factory to Pasture Road here
in town, a bird gave voice to this
amazing rising trill, loud, long, and over
and over. Complexity itself. I had never heard
the like. I had to let my ears lead my eyes
to see what it was for myself...surely not
another Cardinal...but there, high in the
bare branches of the tall Maple, among
the tiny flowers, the red bird sang.

I even remembered to hit record on
the camera, so I have the evidence.

I wish I knew more about Cardinal song.
I wish I knew the meaning of the variations...
or if, in fact, I was witness to the performance
of a Cardinal virtuoso, a genius among birds.

Anything is possible. Maybe google knows.
___

posted image

2016-04-23 12:53:44 (1 comments; 6 reshares; 108 +1s)Open 

Back Creek near the mouth of the Mousam River. Sweep Panorama. Sony HX90V. Processed for HDR effect in Lightroom.

Back Creek near the mouth of the Mousam River. Sweep Panorama. Sony HX90V. Processed for HDR effect in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-23 12:43:07 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

Red-bellied Woodpecker
We don’t have Red-headed Woodpeckers in Maine (or at least I have never seen one), but every time I see a Red-bellied Woodpecker I have to correct myself, since my first instinct is to call it a Red-headed Woodpecker. It is not that they look alike. I know the difference…but this woodpecker should be called “red-headed”, don’t you think? I have, just recently, actually seen the “red” (more like pink) on the belly in the field, but still! Notice the nice fresh and perfectly round nest hole this Red-bellied Woodpecker is working on. Taken along the headquarters trail at Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells, Maine.

Nikon P900 at 2000mm equivalent field of view. 1/500th @ ISO 320 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom.



Red-bellied Woodpecker
We don’t have Red-headed Woodpeckers in Maine (or at least I have never seen one), but every time I see a Red-bellied Woodpecker I have to correct myself, since my first instinct is to call it a Red-headed Woodpecker. It is not that they look alike. I know the difference…but this woodpecker should be called “red-headed”, don’t you think? I have, just recently, actually seen the “red” (more like pink) on the belly in the field, but still! Notice the nice fresh and perfectly round nest hole this Red-bellied Woodpecker is working on. Taken along the headquarters trail at Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge in Wells, Maine.

Nikon P900 at 2000mm equivalent field of view. 1/500th @ ISO 320 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom.

___

posted image

2016-04-22 16:43:45 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 18 +1s)Open 

April 22. Earth Day!

I was photographing Song Sparrows
along the road to Wells Harbor,
just by the first big pool in the marsh
right across from the Fisherman's Catch,
or I thought I was...all the ones that
sat up and sang were Songs...but I
caught one down low in the bush,
working its way among the twigs
and bare branches (early as it still is)
and got off a few bursts, 10-15
exposures, all told, of two different birds.

Imagine my surprise, when processing,
the image large in Lightroom on my laptop,
to see the bright yellow eyestripe of the
Savannah Sparrow, unmistakable, and
the touch of white in the throat, which
just goes to show I need to pay more
attention to what I am photographing...

especially in Spring, when the migrants
are returning, and anything is possible!

April 22. Earth Day!

I was photographing Song Sparrows
along the road to Wells Harbor,
just by the first big pool in the marsh
right across from the Fisherman's Catch,
or I thought I was...all the ones that
sat up and sang were Songs...but I
caught one down low in the bush,
working its way among the twigs
and bare branches (early as it still is)
and got off a few bursts, 10-15
exposures, all told, of two different birds.

Imagine my surprise, when processing,
the image large in Lightroom on my laptop,
to see the bright yellow eyestripe of the
Savannah Sparrow, unmistakable, and
the touch of white in the throat, which
just goes to show I need to pay more
attention to what I am photographing...

especially in Spring, when the migrants
are returning, and anything is possible!___

posted image

2016-04-22 12:03:39 (8 comments; 7 reshares; 157 +1s)Open 

Landscape detail. Deep in the Phragmities (native reeds). In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Landscape detail. Deep in the Phragmities (native reeds). In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-22 11:57:10 (1 comments; 3 reshares; 46 +1s)Open 

Song Sparrow doing its thing...
Yes, well, I could not have planned this shot. The Song Sparrow is at Wells Harbor, in the beach rose along the edge of the sandy beach, with the boatyard and a winter shrouded boat in the background…just far enough away to provide a nice even background for the sunlit sparrow. It has the look of a studio shot. Right place, right time, and a cooperative subject. What more can I say?

Of course the right equipment helps. Taken at the full 2000mm equivalent field of view of the Nikon P900. This is my second P900 as the first is in for repair, and I have a whole bunch of workshops scheduled over the next three weeks. Could not go to Florida (FL Birding and Photo Fest) and Ohio (Biggest Week in American Birding, aka Warblestock) without my P900…so, a second camera. 1/640th @ ISO 100 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom.



Song Sparrow doing its thing...
Yes, well, I could not have planned this shot. The Song Sparrow is at Wells Harbor, in the beach rose along the edge of the sandy beach, with the boatyard and a winter shrouded boat in the background…just far enough away to provide a nice even background for the sunlit sparrow. It has the look of a studio shot. Right place, right time, and a cooperative subject. What more can I say?

Of course the right equipment helps. Taken at the full 2000mm equivalent field of view of the Nikon P900. This is my second P900 as the first is in for repair, and I have a whole bunch of workshops scheduled over the next three weeks. Could not go to Florida (FL Birding and Photo Fest) and Ohio (Biggest Week in American Birding, aka Warblestock) without my P900…so, a second camera. 1/640th @ ISO 100 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom.

___

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2016-04-21 23:13:03 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 7 +1s)Open 

Rachel Carson NWR Headquarters. Red-bellied Woodpecker

Rachel Carson NWR Headquarters. Red-bellied Woodpecker___

posted image

2016-04-21 23:06:55 (0 comments; 3 reshares; 4 +1s)Open 

A bit of video of a Song Sparrow from Wells Harbor today.

A bit of video of a Song Sparrow from Wells Harbor today.___

posted image

2016-04-21 18:07:27 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 13 +1s)Open 

April 21

Red bird sings in the bare birch tree:
"Cheer, Cheer, Cheer, chick, chick, chick."
which is Cardinal for "Here I am, ladies,
bright red and ready, and a great provider...
Look! Look! You can't go wrong with me."

I know.

If only our own love songs were so
eloquent, so effective, so efficient,
why, the whole history of the human
race might be considerably different...
poets (and country and western song
writers), at the very least, would have
a whole lot less to say. Take a lesson:

"Cheer, Cheer, Cheer, chick, chick, chick!"

April 21

Red bird sings in the bare birch tree:
"Cheer, Cheer, Cheer, chick, chick, chick."
which is Cardinal for "Here I am, ladies,
bright red and ready, and a great provider...
Look! Look! You can't go wrong with me."

I know.

If only our own love songs were so
eloquent, so effective, so efficient,
why, the whole history of the human
race might be considerably different...
poets (and country and western song
writers), at the very least, would have
a whole lot less to say. Take a lesson:

"Cheer, Cheer, Cheer, chick, chick, chick!"___

posted image

2016-04-21 11:57:59 (2 comments; 4 reshares; 141 +1s)Open 

Great Head across Back Creek and the Mousam River. Kennebunk ME. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. Again, mostly about the clouds. 

Great Head across Back Creek and the Mousam River. Kennebunk ME. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. Again, mostly about the clouds. ___

posted image

2016-04-21 11:47:40 (1 comments; 2 reshares; 42 +1s)Open 

Cardinal in Song
The old red bird sings in the bare birch tree. Sounds like the lyrics of a song. Or maybe the beginnings of a poem. 🙂 Northern Cardinal along the Kennebunk Bridle Path near the Mousam River.

Nikon P900 at 2000mm equivalent field of view. 1/500th @ ISO 160 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom with NIK filters.



Cardinal in Song
The old red bird sings in the bare birch tree. Sounds like the lyrics of a song. Or maybe the beginnings of a poem. 🙂 Northern Cardinal along the Kennebunk Bridle Path near the Mousam River.

Nikon P900 at 2000mm equivalent field of view. 1/500th @ ISO 160 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom with NIK filters.

___

posted image

2016-04-21 01:24:26 (0 comments; 1 reshares; 20 +1s)Open 

April 20

Purple Finches at the feeder,
one male and two females,
first time in 20 years...yes
indeed, something new in
our own backyard. I have a
theory that if you sit still
long enough, every possible
bird will come to you. This
is the third day for the Finches,
so not just a chance encounter,
a substantive experience, and
who knows what bird, what
new sensation, tomorrow
may bring to our backyard?

April 20

Purple Finches at the feeder,
one male and two females,
first time in 20 years...yes
indeed, something new in
our own backyard. I have a
theory that if you sit still
long enough, every possible
bird will come to you. This
is the third day for the Finches,
so not just a chance encounter,
a substantive experience, and
who knows what bird, what
new sensation, tomorrow
may bring to our backyard?___

posted image

2016-04-20 14:30:55 (0 comments; 2 reshares; 20 +1s)Open 

Rain or shine, the birds, wildlife, and landscapes of tropical Honduras are waiting to be explored with your camera. Steve Ingraham provides Point and Shoot friendly instruction. Based at the world famous Lodge at Pico Bonito, 6 nights, the last week in June, at a Point and Shoot friendly price too! Go to http://psnp.lightshedder.com/?page_id=867

Rain or shine, the birds, wildlife, and landscapes of tropical Honduras are waiting to be explored with your camera. Steve Ingraham provides Point and Shoot friendly instruction. Based at the world famous Lodge at Pico Bonito, 6 nights, the last week in June, at a Point and Shoot friendly price too! Go to http://psnp.lightshedder.com/?page_id=867___

posted image

2016-04-20 12:24:04 (0 comments; 4 reshares; 40 +1s)Open 

Kestrel
The light was going fast, with a storm coming on, and my “big gun” is in the shop, so I did not have the reach I am used to, but who can pass up a hunting American Kestrel. This is one of a pair that have been hunting, according to a fellow photographer who has been watching them, this field for a week. Maybe they will nest somewhere in the big Maples along the road, or in the forest bordering the field.

Nikon P610 at 1440mm equivalent field of view. 1/800th @ ISO 100 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom and cropped slightly for scale.



Kestrel
The light was going fast, with a storm coming on, and my “big gun” is in the shop, so I did not have the reach I am used to, but who can pass up a hunting American Kestrel. This is one of a pair that have been hunting, according to a fellow photographer who has been watching them, this field for a week. Maybe they will nest somewhere in the big Maples along the road, or in the forest bordering the field.

Nikon P610 at 1440mm equivalent field of view. 1/800th @ ISO 100 @ f6.5. Processed in Lightroom and cropped slightly for scale.

___

posted image

2016-04-20 12:22:20 (14 comments; 9 reshares; 197 +1s)Open 

Or cloudscape. Near our local beach yesterday. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

Or cloudscape. Near our local beach yesterday. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-19 20:19:36 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 11 +1s)Open 

Day Poems 2016
April 19

I watched a lady Kestrel
hunt the broad fields that
back the hedge row of big
old maples that lines the
road into our local beach.

She swoops from post to
high perch in Maple branches,
then swoops again, and
pounces, lifting some
unsuspecting grasshopper
or cricket from the short
mown stubble of the field.

See, she hovers, wings working
against gravity, facing into the
off-shore wind, intent on some
prey I can not even see...but
sufficient, evidently, to her needs.

Who am I to question the hunting
habits of the lovey lady Kestrel,
especially when she shares such
an intimate moment with me.

Day Poems 2016
April 19

I watched a lady Kestrel
hunt the broad fields that
back the hedge row of big
old maples that lines the
road into our local beach.

She swoops from post to
high perch in Maple branches,
then swoops again, and
pounces, lifting some
unsuspecting grasshopper
or cricket from the short
mown stubble of the field.

See, she hovers, wings working
against gravity, facing into the
off-shore wind, intent on some
prey I can not even see...but
sufficient, evidently, to her needs.

Who am I to question the hunting
habits of the lovey lady Kestrel,
especially when she shares such
an intimate moment with me.___

posted image

2016-04-19 13:40:42 (2 comments; 8 reshares; 192 +1s)Open 

A little spring pond action from Laudholm Farms. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

A little spring pond action from Laudholm Farms. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-19 13:07:48 (4 comments; 6 reshares; 61 +1s)Open 

Caught looking. Nuthatch.
This is another shot from my encounter with the nesting White Breasted Nuthatches. This is the female trying to keep track of the male as he foraged around her.

Nikon P900 at 4000mm equivalent field of view (2000mm optical plus 2x Perfect Image zoom). 1/500th @ ISO 125 @ f6.5. It does not seem possible that you can handhold 4000mm equivalent magnification…but, obviously, you can :)

Caught looking. Nuthatch.
This is another shot from my encounter with the nesting White Breasted Nuthatches. This is the female trying to keep track of the male as he foraged around her.

Nikon P900 at 4000mm equivalent field of view (2000mm optical plus 2x Perfect Image zoom). 1/500th @ ISO 125 @ f6.5. It does not seem possible that you can handhold 4000mm equivalent magnification…but, obviously, you can :)___

2016-04-18 19:45:48 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 3 +1s)Open 

April 18

Today I found my first tick
of the season. It must have
ridden home on my hat
from Day Brook Pond and
the Kennebunk Plains, and
waited patiently there all night
and half the day until I put
that hat on again...and then
crawled down, while I was 
driving, over the brim and into 
the hair-line on my forehead.

I caught it between thumb and
forefinger, and held it until
I got the car stopped and the 
door open to dispose of it...
but now, of course, despite
a through inspection of the
hat and my clothing, I have
imaginary ticks in thirty
places...crawling...crawling.

Even finding the woods full
of tiny blue butterflies (Spring
Azures I am sure) in their first
gyrating flight, can not entirely
rid me of those phantom ticks.

Ticks, that are,in... more »

April 18

Today I found my first tick
of the season. It must have
ridden home on my hat
from Day Brook Pond and
the Kennebunk Plains, and
waited patiently there all night
and half the day until I put
that hat on again...and then
crawled down, while I was 
driving, over the brim and into 
the hair-line on my forehead.

I caught it between thumb and
forefinger, and held it until
I got the car stopped and the 
door open to dispose of it...
but now, of course, despite
a through inspection of the
hat and my clothing, I have
imaginary ticks in thirty
places...crawling...crawling.

Even finding the woods full
of tiny blue butterflies (Spring
Azures I am sure) in their first
gyrating flight, can not entirely
rid me of those phantom ticks.

Ticks, that are, in Southern 
Maine, just one of Nature's ways
of reminding us that, despite
our superior airs and graces, we 
are no more, and no better, than 
any other link in the food chain.___

posted image

2016-04-18 13:03:17 (11 comments; 7 reshares; 190 +1s)Open 

This is the swale that inspired yesterday's Day Poem.

In summer the swale at the head
of Day Brook Pond on the
Kennebunk Plains is an impenetrable
tangle of vegetation, but now
in mid-April, I work my way right
to the stream at the heart of it.

It twists and turns between the
roots of standing trees, narrows
and pools behind the fallen trunks
and branches that all but block it,
slow with a peaty bottom, then
rippling to reveal a patch of the
white sand that forms the plain
above...down here hidden, all but
silent, secret. A Downy Woodpecker
drums in the trees upstream and back
by the pond I hear the thin songs of
Palm Warblers singing... music
enough for this congregation of one,
this secret chapel by the living water,
this moment of awe-filled worship.

In-camera... more »

This is the swale that inspired yesterday's Day Poem.

In summer the swale at the head
of Day Brook Pond on the
Kennebunk Plains is an impenetrable
tangle of vegetation, but now
in mid-April, I work my way right
to the stream at the heart of it.

It twists and turns between the
roots of standing trees, narrows
and pools behind the fallen trunks
and branches that all but block it,
slow with a peaty bottom, then
rippling to reveal a patch of the
white sand that forms the plain
above...down here hidden, all but
silent, secret. A Downy Woodpecker
drums in the trees upstream and back
by the pond I hear the thin songs of
Palm Warblers singing... music
enough for this congregation of one,
this secret chapel by the living water,
this moment of awe-filled worship.

In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-18 12:49:11 (12 comments; 8 reshares; 125 +1s)Open 

Turtles on a log!
It has been in the 50s the past few days, and sunny, which has brought the Painted Turtles at Day Brook Pond on the Kennebunk Plains Wildlife Management Area out in force. I saw a dozen or more, of all sizes, sunning themselves on the half-submerged White Birch trunks along the edge of the pond, and I am sure I did not see them all. They seemed to like to pile up on each other. I am not sure why. Maybe that gave the smaller turtles a better view.

Nikon P900 at 1400mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ ISO 140 @ f6.3. Processed in Lightroom.

Turtles on a log!
It has been in the 50s the past few days, and sunny, which has brought the Painted Turtles at Day Brook Pond on the Kennebunk Plains Wildlife Management Area out in force. I saw a dozen or more, of all sizes, sunning themselves on the half-submerged White Birch trunks along the edge of the pond, and I am sure I did not see them all. They seemed to like to pile up on each other. I am not sure why. Maybe that gave the smaller turtles a better view.

Nikon P900 at 1400mm equivalent field of view. 1/250th @ ISO 140 @ f6.3. Processed in Lightroom.___

2016-04-17 18:06:37 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 6 +1s)Open 

April 17

In summer the swale at the head
of Day Brook Pond on the 
Kennebunk Plains is an impenetrable 
tangle of vegetation, but now
in mid-April, I work my way right
to the stream at the heart of it.

It twists and turns between the 
roots of standing trees, narrows
and pools behind the fallen trunks
and branches that all but block it, 
slow with a peaty bottom, then 
rippling to reveal a patch of the
white sand that forms the plain
above...down here hidden, all but 
silent, secret. A Downy Woodpecker 
drums in the trees upstream and back 
by the pond I hear the thin songs of 
Palm Warblers singing... music 
enough for this congregation of one, 
this secret chapel by the living water, 
this moment of awe-filled worship.

April 17

In summer the swale at the head
of Day Brook Pond on the 
Kennebunk Plains is an impenetrable 
tangle of vegetation, but now
in mid-April, I work my way right
to the stream at the heart of it.

It twists and turns between the 
roots of standing trees, narrows
and pools behind the fallen trunks
and branches that all but block it, 
slow with a peaty bottom, then 
rippling to reveal a patch of the
white sand that forms the plain
above...down here hidden, all but 
silent, secret. A Downy Woodpecker 
drums in the trees upstream and back 
by the pond I hear the thin songs of 
Palm Warblers singing... music 
enough for this congregation of one, 
this secret chapel by the living water, 
this moment of awe-filled worship.___

posted image

2016-04-17 13:05:20 (4 comments; 8 reshares; 184 +1s)Open 

A corner of the Kennebunk Plains along Day Brook Pond. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.

A corner of the Kennebunk Plains along Day Brook Pond. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom.___

posted image

2016-04-17 12:53:05 (5 comments; 3 reshares; 49 +1s)Open 

Nuthatch courtship. Happy Sunday!
“If your eye is generous, your whole being is full of light!” Jesus

I had walked a long ways on the Kennebunk Bridle Path yesterday without seeing anything of note. In fact I had turned around and was headed back to the car when a pair of White-breasted Nuthatches flew across and landed in trees off to my right. Camera up! I could only see one of them and he was off deeper into the woods toward the river before I got any good shots, but I stood and waited, and, sure enough, he circled back, foraging 20 to 40 feet up in the trees. That is when I noticed the second Nuthatch sticking out of a hole in a tree trunk 40 feet in. I got lots of good shots of both the foraging male, as he worked his way around the nest hole, and the female with various portions of her body out of the hole looking to see what the male was up to. After maybe 10 minutes themal... more »

Nuthatch courtship. Happy Sunday!
“If your eye is generous, your whole being is full of light!” Jesus

I had walked a long ways on the Kennebunk Bridle Path yesterday without seeing anything of note. In fact I had turned around and was headed back to the car when a pair of White-breasted Nuthatches flew across and landed in trees off to my right. Camera up! I could only see one of them and he was off deeper into the woods toward the river before I got any good shots, but I stood and waited, and, sure enough, he circled back, foraging 20 to 40 feet up in the trees. That is when I noticed the second Nuthatch sticking out of a hole in a tree trunk 40 feet in. I got lots of good shots of both the foraging male, as he worked his way around the nest hole, and the female with various portions of her body out of the hole looking to see what the male was up to. After maybe 10 minutes the male worked his way down to the nest hole with a bug in his mouth, and there was a little dance all around the hole as he, apparently, teased her with the bug before transferring it to her. This is the best shot from that sequence. I watched them for 20 minutes more, and got some excellent shots of both, but the little courtship dance was the best of the action. They were totally oblivious to my presence on the trail (one of the advantages of a 2000mm equivalent lens), but still, I felt like I should move on and leave them in even more peace to get on with nest building and courtship.

How can anyone not feed privileged, blessed indeed, to get to see something like the courtship of Nuthatches? Just that little intimate moment out of their lives. I would like to believe that there is not a soul so deadened that it can not be moved by such an encounter. But I have seen the damage the world does to human beings…to children most of all…damage that produces such a shell of indifference; such a self-centered, in-grown view; such an active malice toward life and the living…that even the courtship of Nuthatches, should they look up long enough to see it, is as likely to generate anger or mischief as it is to engender love. That is the opposite of the generous eye. That is the stingy eye, that shelters darkness inside. That is so sad. It has to break the heart of a loving God. Which is why God spent the love of God in Jesus…so that the hardened heart, the stingy eye, might be renewed…the deadened soul reborn.

And those who do feel a sense of wonder and privilege in seeing the Nuthatches courting, but who feel as yet no need of God? I can only say…you are just a step away from the Kingdom of God…perhaps even citizens of that Kingdom unknowing. There is no disguising the generous eye…there is no hiding the light within.___

2016-04-16 17:17:43 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 6 +1s)Open 

April 16, 2016

I am impatient for spring,
I will admit it...I go out looking
for it every sunny April day, 
and I treasure every early sign...
but the fact is (and nothings 
going to change it) spring in 
Maine does not really get moving 
until the first weeks of May.

The changes in April are 
incremental...the Wood Frog
chorus in vernal pools, various 
migrant birds returning...early 
Palm Warblers, Phoebes, Song
Sparrows...winter Finches turning
yellow, Maple buds and blooms, 
the first Egrets dotting the
marshes...small things that add 
and build toward a tipping point...
a critical mass in those first days 
of May when spring finally takes 
hold, settles in for the long push 
toward summer. (Which we fully
expect, in Maine, not much 
later thanIndependence ... more »

April 16, 2016

I am impatient for spring,
I will admit it...I go out looking
for it every sunny April day, 
and I treasure every early sign...
but the fact is (and nothings 
going to change it) spring in 
Maine does not really get moving 
until the first weeks of May.

The changes in April are 
incremental...the Wood Frog
chorus in vernal pools, various 
migrant birds returning...early 
Palm Warblers, Phoebes, Song
Sparrows...winter Finches turning
yellow, Maple buds and blooms, 
the first Egrets dotting the
marshes...small things that add 
and build toward a tipping point...
a critical mass in those first days 
of May when spring finally takes 
hold, settles in for the long push 
toward summer. (Which we fully
expect, in Maine, not much 
later than Independence Day.)___

posted image

2016-04-16 12:06:06 (7 comments; 15 reshares; 283 +1s)Open 

Old Falls on the Mousam River. Spring view. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. 

Old Falls on the Mousam River. Spring view. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. ___

posted image

2016-04-16 11:57:09 (1 comments; 1 reshares; 45 +1s)Open 

Chipper Chipper
This little Chipmunk inspired yesterday’s Day Poem, and my wife reminded me that, while it might have been the first forest dwelling Chipmunk we have seen this season, our back deck Chipper who comes for the scattered seeds under the feeders, has already put in an appearance. Does not count! He is almost a tame Chipmunk, or more like something in our own private backyard zoo. :) This fellow on the other hand, as you can clearly see, has not been caging sunflower seeds this spring. He is still winter lean. But that is in the poem.

Walking out on Timber Point
and across the bar at low tide
to Timber Island today, we
encountered our first chipmunk
of the season…up from his
winter nap, looking lean, but
healthy, eager as ever for
whatever he could find in
the leaf litter to sustain him.

He stood a second, on hindl... more »

Chipper Chipper
This little Chipmunk inspired yesterday’s Day Poem, and my wife reminded me that, while it might have been the first forest dwelling Chipmunk we have seen this season, our back deck Chipper who comes for the scattered seeds under the feeders, has already put in an appearance. Does not count! He is almost a tame Chipmunk, or more like something in our own private backyard zoo. :) This fellow on the other hand, as you can clearly see, has not been caging sunflower seeds this spring. He is still winter lean. But that is in the poem.

Walking out on Timber Point
and across the bar at low tide
to Timber Island today, we
encountered our first chipmunk
of the season…up from his
winter nap, looking lean, but
healthy, eager as ever for
whatever he could find in
the leaf litter to sustain him.

He stood a second, on hind
legs, against a slanting stick,
his tail curled up behind,
the very picture of anticipation…
hope personified…if you will
let me get away with saying
that of a chipmunk, ready
for warmer days and the coming
round of sprouts, shoots, buds,
blossoms…but ready too, if
nothing better is on offer,
to dine on a half rotten acorn
hidden in dim back beyond
of the abundant fall gone by.

Surely he can not remember,
and each acorn he finds
must come as total surprise,
manna from heaven, a gift
outright, amazing grace, if
he only knew…but then you
already let me get away
with calling him a person.

Nikon P900 at 1440mm equivalent field of view (I was too close for full zoom). 1/400th @ ISO 400 @ f6.3. Processed in Lightroom.

___

2016-04-15 23:17:42 (0 comments; 0 reshares; 5 +1s)Open 

April 15, 2016

Walking out on Timber Point
and across the bar at low tide
to Timber Island today, we 
encountered our first chipmunk
of the season...up from his
winter nap, looking lean, but
healthy, eager as ever for 
whatever he could find in
the leaf litter to sustain him.

He stood a second, on hind
legs, against a slanting stick,
his tail curled up behind,
the very picture of anticipation...
hope personified...if you will
let me get away with saying 
that of a chipmunk, ready
for warmer days and the coming 
round of sprouts, shoots, buds, 
blossoms...but ready too, if 
nothing better is on offer, 
to dine on a half rotten acorn 
hidden in dim back beyond
of the abundant fall gone by.

Surely he can not remember,
and each acorn he finds 
mustcome as ... more »

April 15, 2016

Walking out on Timber Point
and across the bar at low tide
to Timber Island today, we 
encountered our first chipmunk
of the season...up from his
winter nap, looking lean, but
healthy, eager as ever for 
whatever he could find in
the leaf litter to sustain him.

He stood a second, on hind
legs, against a slanting stick,
his tail curled up behind,
the very picture of anticipation...
hope personified...if you will
let me get away with saying 
that of a chipmunk, ready
for warmer days and the coming 
round of sprouts, shoots, buds, 
blossoms...but ready too, if 
nothing better is on offer, 
to dine on a half rotten acorn 
hidden in dim back beyond
of the abundant fall gone by.

Surely he can not remember,
and each acorn he finds 
must come as total surprise,
manna from heaven, a gift
outright, amazing grace, if
he only knew...but then you
already let me get away
with calling him a person.___

posted image

2016-04-15 12:59:31 (4 comments; 10 reshares; 149 +1s)Open 

One of my favorite stands of White Birch...at Laudholm Farms in Wells Maine. Just beginning to show red at the tips. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. 

One of my favorite stands of White Birch...at Laudholm Farms in Wells Maine. Just beginning to show red at the tips. In-camera HDR. Sony HX90V. Processed in Lightroom. ___

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