Clark’s Grebes

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I spent the week-end with old friends Theresa, Dali, and Alex birding up in Clear Lake. We went to see Grebes, we hoped dancing on the water.

We booked a boat with the same tour group we used last year Eyes of the Wild with Faith as our Captain. You can read that post here.

We booked early and Faith kept us abreast of the Grebe situation on the lake on and off up until our booking day. Last week she sent me a text message saying that courting had really slowed down, but she had a surprise. Babies were early and she’d found several pair of Grebes with babies! Did we still want to come up?

Did we still want to come up? OF COURSE WE DID!  We’d go to see the chicks alone! We had hoped to get up there again last summer to see Grebe chicks, but there was a huge fire, the drought, add to that predators, well, it all added up to a low number of Grebes and not too many babies so, we didn’t go back up last year. We went this time!

Here’s my favorite image today of the babies and their parents.

Grebe Family

Dad had brought the fish, made a perfect transfer of it to Mom, and the chicks were out and exposed from their Mom’s wings peeping their heads off to get that fish!  The morning light was lovely, and I managed to keep the shot in focus and made before the boat moved up or down with a swell!

This was such an exciting, wonderful,  beautiful sight to see!

We also saw a few dances. We saw Osprey pairs with chicks, and a really pretty sunset among the most notable things we saw this past week-end.

I came home with 1700 images to cull. I’ve made my first pass and deleted about 400 already.  I’ll try to break up the posts so I don’t bore you to death with images of Grebes all the time. 🙂

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm| SunDisk Digital Film|

More to come…

 

 

 

 

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California Quail

Copyright © 2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

When I was setting up my rig a few weeks ago in Santa Cruz to photograph Hummingbirds a California Quail jumped up on an old weathered post not too far from me surrounded by lovely flowers.  I moved pretty quick to finish setting up my tripod w/Sidekick and mounting my camera hoping it would stick around!

California Quail on Post

“You lookin’ at me?”…

California Quail- The Look

A little Morning Stretch…

California Quail-Morning Stretch

Seeing and photographing this Quail first thing in the morning made my day. They’re so quick, and skittish that I’ve only been able to get a few good images of any.  The rest of the images I made this day were icing on the cake.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm VR| Lexar Professional Digital Film| PS CC 2015

Wishing you all a great week-end!

More to come…

 

 

 

The Surprise Visitors

Copyright © 2015 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED!

This morning when I went out front I noticed a large flock of American Robins in the Ginko trees across the street, and there was a group of another bird I didn’t quite recognize, but knew it was something I’d want to photograph so, ran back in the house and grabbed my camera; hoping I had enough battery charge left to get an image or two!

I got a few shots then looked at them quickly in review mode, and saw that the birds were Cedar Waxwings! I’ve never seen them here before! Can you imagine my excitement? I was standing across the street from the tree which meant the images would need to be cropped in quite a bit so, I slowly advanced closer to the tree firing my shutter the whole time. I got too close, and all the birds scattered like leaves in a gust of wind. My only thought…COME B A C K!!!

Did I tell you that He-Man ruptured his Patella Tendon Nov. 10th?  Ruptured…the whole quadricep muscle came off his knee cap!  He had surgery on Nov. 12th and has been healing and in rehab since. His Surgeon told him he’d be “out” for the whole season and then some. He’s a cyclist, and a very active guy. This was the worst possible diagnosis. Yesterday he got the “okay” to start driving again. So, this afternoon he drove me in Pearl ( the Subaru Forester) to the post office which is 2 miles from our house.
It was like riding a bike. He was fabulous…moving from the brake to the gas pedal was no problem at all. When we got home he immediately got in Va-Va my 5 Speed Toyota Corolla Sport to take her for a spin, but I had spotted the Waxwings in the trees across the street again, and the light was nice. I begged for 5 minutes! As I was shooting he backed out, rolled down the window and said, “I’ll be fine. I’m just going around the block a few times.”  I said, ” WAIT I’ll come with!” He said, ” No need. I’ll be fine. Get the shots.”  He was back before I finished shooting. 🙂

5 Cedar Waxwings…

5 Cedar Waxwings

Mrs. American Robin with Mr. American Robin close by,

American Robin Female

Cedar Waxwings

Cedar Waxwings

Purple Finch

Purple Finch

Cedar Waxwing

Cedar Waxwing

Fabulous birds in front of my house, and the only thing He-Man needs me to do now that he can’t do for himself is put on his socks, and tie his shoes. Life is good!

Nikon D700| AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/4 w?AF-S Nikkor 14eII TC| Hand-held| Lexar Professional Digital Film| Developed in CS6

More to come…