Friday, February 29, 2008

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

web sites

Due to other commitments, I have not been out taking pictures for some time -- as you can see from this blog. Today I was referred to George Lepp's web site; I spent quite a bit of time exploring and can recommend it to you, particularly on a cold or dreary day when the outdoors doesn't call you. Be sure to check out the many links.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sax Zim Bog Festival

For one of the best detailed reports on the Festival, check out Lynne's Hasty Brook blog.
Liz has posted more photos.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

protecting birds

Do you want to be proactive in protecting birds? Check out Birders United.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

tonight's eclipse of the moon

For another photo of the eclipse, check my other blog.

get the right tool

My advice would be to get the right tool for the job.
If you want to spot birds, get a spotting scope.
If you want to do serious photography, get some photographic equipment.

Monday, February 18, 2008

an addition

Add Ecobirder's blog to your list for pictures from the Sax-Zim bog festival in the next day or so.

a photographer's attributes

A velvet hand, a hawk's eye -- these we should all have.
-- Henri Cartier-Bresson

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sax Zim Bog Festival

From preliminary reports, it was a huge success! Due to other obligations (see my Feb. 15 post), I was not able to make it. The organizer, Mike Hendrickson, reported 150 birders from 19 states. Plans are underway for an even bigger event next year. Liz Stanley has posted a few photos on her web site. Check the Hasty Brook and Nature Knitter blogs for more in the next day or so -- I hope!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

a really TOUGH camera

Often when I want to shoot something, the only camera I have with me is the one in my Palm Treo. While it's better than nothing, it lacks resolution and focusing ability. It's been a while since I've had a small digital camera (the last one was a SONY that worked very well) so I've been thinking about a new one. One factor that has concerned me is that these small pocket cameras seem to be fragile. The answer to my search may be the new Olympus 1030 SW.
This 10-megapixel point-and-shoot camera will survive a 6.6 ft. drop, is waterproof, freezeproof, and crushproof. The only downside is the price: $400 -- but, maybe not, if it is as indestructible as claimed. Read more about it in the NY Times.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


I can watch bunnies . . .

. . . and squirrels that are smarter than I . . .
. . . for only so long. Time to get out of the office . . .

. . . and head out for Carlos Avery.
Very few birds today. A couple of chickadees, some woodpeckers making noise, and a couple of Bald Eagles at a great distance.

I stayed until sunset.


Monday, February 11, 2008

persistent squirrel on my bird feeder

"My name is Ivars Krafts -- I may have several college degrees -- but I am not smarter than a red squirrel."

Sunday, February 10, 2008

silly Chickadee

This Chickadee insists on eating snow even though there is a heated bird bath within 20 feet.

"You have a problem with that?"

Saturday, February 9, 2008

too cold!!

As the afternoon wore on, I lost my desire to get out beyond my yard.
It was easier (and warmer) to photograph the usual suspects close to home.

(more to follow)

a bird in the hand . . .

A bird in the hand is dead.
-- Boozer's revision to Boyle's Laws

Thursday, February 7, 2008

another amazing hummingbird factoid

A hummingbird that chirps with its tail -- click here.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

new case

The world's toughest, airline carry-on case for your camera equipment. For more info, click here.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

2008 Shorebird Workshop

In August of 2006, I attended the Big Stone NWR shorebird workshop. Based on that experience, which was excellent, I wanted to register for the 2008 Shorebird Workshop led by Bob Janssen & Doug Buri -- however, the first scheduled session was on dates that presented conflicts for me. Now a second session has been set for August 1-3. I've sent in my down payment and, hopefully, enough folks will sign up so that this second workshop can be held. I'd hate to miss it -- so, think about attending. Full details are on their website:

How do we take pictures?

Every other artist begins [with] a blank canvas,
a piece of paper . . .
the photographer begins with the finished product.
-- Edward Steichen

Monday, February 4, 2008


That's the price at today's exchange rate for Sigma's 200-500mm f/2.8 lens described in our blog last Wednesday. No price yet on the 150-500mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM, but it is scheduled to be released in April (I'm definitely interested).

Saturday, February 2, 2008


If you are like me, you never tire of eagle photos. You can find some excellent, current, local shots on Ecobirder's blog -- take a look.

more from yesterday at Carlos

As I mentioned yesterday, it was impossible for me to get close to the hawks; very unlike last fall. They wouldn't even let my car get near, much less put up with me getting out of the car. All of these shots were with my Canon XTi and the Canon 300mm f/4 lens. On my next trip I will try for some photos with the 400mm and the 1.4x and 2x converters. Perhaps digiscoping is the way to go in these circumstances.

Friday, February 1, 2008

my morning at Carlos

As promised, I headed out to Carlos Avery this morning. I had hoped for some sun, but arriving at sunrise, about 7:30 a.m., all was under a dense cloud cover.

The first sign of life was a group of 5 deer -- this is one.

My bird list included a couple of pheasants, a few crows, and several Rough-legged Hawks. Unfortunately, they were all at quite a distance. The above is a full-frame shot with a 300mm lens.

An eagle nest that has been empty for a number of years -- is it possible a new pair could take it over this year?

more reminders of winter

Just as I was leaving the refuge the sun started to break through the clouds. I'll be posting a few pictures of hawks I was able to get on my way out.