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Category Archives: California Wildlife Reserves

Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Yellow Warbler-Female

Nikon D810| Nikkor 200-500mm| SanDisk Digital Film| PS CC 2017

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Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Saturday morning was another very early 4A.M. wake up for a sunrise shoot with friends a little further north of me at Don Edward Wildlife Refuge.  The plan was to arrive early and photograph sunrise then go birding.

We met at 6AM et Quelle horreur! The gate was locked! It didn’t open until sunrise which wasn’t until after 7AM. Once the gate opened we drove out to the marshes/ponds and I raced to set up my rig to catch the colors that were unfolding in the Eastern sky.

The power towers run right through the marsh so I composed this image with them as a focal point and interest rather than trying to avoid them.  I also discovered that while packing my gear bag I inadvertently grabbed my 50mm lens rather than my 20mm lens!  They’re both small, and have the same make-up, and I wasn’t wearing my reading glasses. Sigh.

I rarely use this lens so, composing was a bit of challenge for me. I like a wider view, or a much tighter view, but I am happy with this composition.

Dawn in the Marshlands

Then I went birding but found very few birds on the marsh. The Winter migrants have pretty much left, but there were two pair of Canvasback ducks swimming in a stream which I was excited to see. I’ve been trying to be close enough to photograph one since I first saw one many years ago. Unfortunately, they weren’t any closer on Saturday so I still don’t have a decent image of one.  Maybe next year. 🙂

The tale doesn’t end there though. No. It turned out to be a very exciting birding day, but I went to another refuge, and I’ll tell you about that later this week. I was out all day Sunday too, and haven’t had a chance to work on the many bird images I made this past week-end; between Saturday and Sunday I shot 1,100+ images.

Happy First Day of Spring!

Nikon D700| Nikkor 50mm| Lexar Professional Digital Film| PS CC 2017

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Copyright  ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Snow Geese in Flight

Snow Geese in Flight

Snow Goose in Flight

Snow Geese in Flight

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm @500mm| Lexar Professional Digital Film| PS CC 2017

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Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I mentioned in yesterday’s blog post here that photographing November’s Super Moon was N° 1 on my photography list of things to do this past week-end.

Quite awhile back I made plans to shoot it with with friends, and a photography group we’re in in central California at a Sandhill Crane Refuge called Woodbridge Ecological Reserve aka Isenberg Crane Reserve.    The Sandhill Cranes Winter here, and in November both Greater and Lesser Sandhill Cranes are on the Reserve.

The goal was to photograph the Sandhill Crane’s evening Fly-in and rising Super Moon.

Here is a series of images I made.

It was hazy and a little cloudy, but here is the Moon just rising above the mountains. You can barely see the mountains.

Rising Super Moon

…some Sandhill Cranes making their way into the Marsh.

Sandhill Cranes and the Super Moon November 2016

super-moon-and-reflection

Two Sandhill Cranes flying in high in front of the Moon.

Sandhill Cranes and the Super Moon

Once the sun went down it was pretty tough shooting. I really pushed the ISO to keep my shutter speed up so the Sandhill Cranes wouldn’t be too blurry, but I failed for the most part. I also focused on the Moon and not the Cranes which didn’t help keep the Cranes sharp.  Still. I would do it all over again. It was an amazing evening hearing and seeing the Cranes coming in with this year’s special Super Moon, and the company was the best.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm| Lexar Digital Film| PS CC 2017 & On1 Photo 10.5

More to come…

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