Whatever Weds. Birding with Friends

Copyright ©2023 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

After having to postpone a trip to California to do some birding with friends 2 times due to weather I was finally able to cross the mountains and make that meetup last weekend.

We had a lovely day weather wise. It was sunny, not windy, and thankfully not muddy from all the rain and flooding the area had had.

On my way to meet the group I stopped at a refuge along the way just after daybreak to see if there were birds on the pond. There were hardly any but, oh, it was pretty.

Colusa National Wildlife Refuge Platform pond.

I wanted to drive the auto route to see what birds were in the other ponds but, every thing beyond the platform pond was closed due to flooding. I hung around for a bit hoping some more birds would fly in, but the birds that were flying overhead kept on flying…I wondered where they were headed since it wasn’t this lovely pond they were headed for? What was wrong with this pond?!!

I left to meet up with my friends at Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge just up the road about 20 miles.

I took just over 700 hundred images but, after my first culling I have a smidge over 200 keepers, and quite a few of those are duplicates that will require a second culling to really hone it down and free up much needed disk space. That second culling is so hard. Do you find it as hard as I do to let go of those? I feel like I need those as back up images! It’s nuts I know especially as I have a two fold backup system in place for my images and yet…it’s so hard to let some of those duplicates go!

I’ve only processed two of my images so far. The top image in this post and this Red-Shouldered Hawk. I had to work so hard for its image. I was driving around the auto-route and this bird was on the passenger side of the road way up high at the top of this dead snag. I couldn’t see it from my seat. I had to reposition my car kinda kaddy wompass, and hope no one else came up behind me while Gordon a fellow blogger from https://undiscoverdimagesamongstus.wordpress.com/who was in the back seat and I photographed this bird.

I have a console between bucket seats in the front so I wasn’t able to slide over to get my camera out the window. Lemme tell ya this wasn’t an easy shot. I wanted to be where Gordon was… in the back seat just then. 😀 It was worth the effort though. Isn’t it handsome! fyi- We’re not allowed outside of our cars while on the auto-route. There are a few spots where we are but this spot wasn’t one of those.


Red-Shouldered Hawk

I don’t see this bird very often so I was very happy to get a decent image of it.

It was good birding but, there were fewer birds than have been at this refuge in past years at this time of year. I’m guessing they know something we don’t and maybe winter will be ending sooner than we think and the birds have been heading home to the north already. I hope that’s it anyway.

It was even better hanging out with dear friends while birding. I hope it’s not too long before we can get together again. We’re hoping for a February trip. Fingers crossed that happens!

I’ll be working on more images from this trip to share too but, if you know me it may be awhile before more images from this trip make it to the blog.

Oh, we have a big event in our family this week. Littlest will be 4 years old this week! Time flies! He’s still really into Dinosaurs, but he’s moving into the Superhero phase, and #1 Grandson has him into Pirates and Colonial American characters as well, but his birthday party theme is Legos! #1 Grandson got him into those as well. Aren’t big brothers the best!! 💗

Baby Girl sent this image of him with a couple of his birthday party decorations. He LOVES that Lego head…so does #1 Grandson! 😜

What’s happening in your life this week, any plans, events, or something new going on?

Fuji X-T3| Fuji 100-400mm| PS CC 24.1.0

more to come…

Whatever Weds. Fog, Clouds, and a Hawk

Copyright ©2023 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

We’ve had fog, and storm clouds the last week through the week-end up until last night. We also got a whole lot of snow. Here are a couple of images of the scenery. Recently the mornings have been foggy.

Foggy morning-

Foggy Morning. Cottonwoods, and Russian Olive Trees in the Snow and Fog.

Clouds-After the storm had passed I looked out the window and saw Job’s Peak just peeking out from the clouds, and this brilliant cloud on the left lit by the afternoon sun.

Job’s Peak in the Clouds

Last week I took advantage of a break in the storm to go run some errands, and on my way home I spied this beauty in a tree on my street.

Red-tail Hawk-

We have cloudy skies in the forecast for the rest of the week. Temperatures are forecasted to be lows in the teens, and highs in mid 30’s I hope that holds so I can get out to do some birding and meet up with some friends.

I hope your week is going well, and you have a lovely week-end too!

Fuji X-T3| Fuji 100-400mm Lens| PS CC 24.1.0

more to come…

Friday’s Feathered Friends- Eagles at the Gate

Copyright ©2023 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

This pair has been coming to a tree outside our gate off and on for awhile. It’s lovely to see them come back year after year.

I wish I was able to get in a better position to get a branch free shot this day, but I’ll take it!

American Bald Eagle Pair

Wednesday on my way out to run errands the male was in the tree alone, and me without my camera!

Fun Facts:

I have shared many fun facts about the Bald Eagle over the years so I’ll only include a few here today.

Had Benjamin Franklin prevailed, the U.S. emblem might have been the Wild Turkey. In 1784, Franklin disparaged the national bird’s thieving tendencies and its vulnerability to harassment by small birds. “For my own part,” he wrote, “I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen the Representative of our Country. He is a Bird of bad moral Character. He does not get his Living honestly. … Besides he is a rank Coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the District.”

Sometimes even the national bird has to cut loose. Bald Eagles have been known to play with plastic bottles and other objects pressed into service as toys. One observer witnessed six Bald Eagles passing sticks to each other in midair.

The largest Bald Eagle nest on record, in St. Petersburg, Florida, was 2.9 meters in diameter and 6.1 meters tall. Another famous nest—in Vermilion, Ohio—was shaped like a wine glass and weighed almost two metric tons. It was used for 34 years until the tree blew down.

Fun Facts gleaned from allaboutbirds.org

Today my blog is 13 years old. Thank you all so much for being part of my blogging community, and for the friendships, and conversations we’ve shared. THANK YOU!! 🙏😍

Fuji X-T3| Fuji 100-400mm| PS CC 24.1.0

more to come…

Friday’s Feathered Friends- Cooper’s Hawk

Copyright ©2023 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

For several weeks we’ve had a Cooper’s Hawk perching on a neighbor’s tree out back. With all the White-crown Sparrows, and Quail about I’m sure it’s hoping for a meal.

I’ve been enjoying seeing it perched there.

Cooper’s Hawk

Fun Facts-

    • Dashing through vegetation to catch birds is a dangerous lifestyle. In a study of more than 300 Cooper’s Hawk skeletons, 23 percent showed old, healed-over fractures in the bones of the chest, especially of the furcula, or wishbone.
    • A Cooper’s Hawk captures a bird with its feet and kills it by repeated squeezing. Falcons tend to kill their prey by biting it, but Cooper’s Hawks hold their catch away from the body until it dies. They’ve even been known to drown their prey, holding a bird underwater until it stopped moving.
    • Once thought averse to towns and cities, Cooper’s Hawks are now fairly common urban and suburban birds. Some studies show their numbers are actually higher in towns than in their natural habitat, forests. Cities provide plenty of Rock Pigeon and Mourning Dove prey. Though one study in Arizona found a downside to the high-dove diet: Cooper’s Hawk nestlings suffered from a parasitic disease they acquired from eating dove meat.
    • Life is tricky for male Cooper’s Hawks. As in most hawks, males are significantly smaller than their mates. The danger is that female Cooper’s Hawks specialize in eating medium-sized birds. Males tend to be submissive to females and to listen out for reassuring call notes the females make when they’re willing to be approached. Males build the nest, then provide nearly all the food to females and young over the next 90 days before the young fledge.
    • The oldest recorded Cooper’s Hawk was a male and at least 20 years, 4 months old. He was banded in California in 1986, and found in Washington in 2006.

Fun Facts gleaned from allaboutbirds.org

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon 100-400mm| PS CC 24.1.0

more to come…

Thursday Doors- Nevada’s Capitol Building

Copyright ©2022 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

Nevada really does up Capitol Square for Christmas nicely. Here’s just just a small look at the square.

Nevada State Capitol- Christmas 2022

Here’s a closer look at the doors.

Nevada State Capitol Entryway Doors-Christmas 2022

For the History Buffs-

“First dreamt up by architect Joseph Gosling, the Nevada Capitol building became a reality in the early 1870s, thanks to contractor Peter Cavanaugh. Amazingly, the design for the Nevada State Capitol only cost $250, and was made of sandstone sourced from Abe Curry’s quarry—the founder of Carson City—near the historic Nevada State Prison on the eastern edge of town. Now, more than 130 years later, the Nevada State Capitol holds the bragging rights of being the second oldest capitol building west of the Mississippi River.

By the early 1900s, state architect Frederic DeLongchamps was already hard at work designing almost all of Nevada’s county courthouses and other official buildings in every corner of the Silver State. He helped design Nevada Capitol expansions by adding a breezeway-connected library and north and south wings.” ~https://travelnevada.com/museums/nevada-state-capitol/

Nikon D810| Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G| PS CC 24.0.1

This is part of Thursday Doors hosted by Dan Antion over at No Facilities Head on over to his blog to see many more doors from around the world.

more to come…

Not so Wordless Weds. 47/52 Thankful

This was first posted in 2017, but the feelings haven’t changed.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING, EVERYONE!

Circadianreflections Blog

Copyright ©2014-2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Psst! (Deborah whispers):  over here. come closer. Closer. CLOSER!  I have a secret. It’s supposed to be wordless today, but I feel the need to talk a bit.  Would you mind terribly if I added words? Phew! I’m so glad you don’t mind! I just knew you were kindred spirits and would understand!

I would like to share one of my life’s mottoes with you, okay?  This is the one that keeps me humble.  Are you sure you don’t mind?  Oh, thank you!  I hope sharing it resonates with you. Okay, Here it is…

“There is always, always, always something to be thankful for.”
— Author Unknown

Count your Blessings! Reflect on the good things in your life, and move forward …ever forward with hope and faith. Believing always that it will all work out for the best.  Until next week be well…

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Whatever Weds. Total Lunar Eclipse 11.8.2022

Copyright ©2022 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. DO NOT USE MY IMAGES WITHOUT EXPRESSED WRITTEN PERMISSION!

I didn’t think I’d be able to see the Lunar Eclipse this time around because snow and cloud cover was predicted in the forecast. I set my alarm anyway and thought I’d just photograph Totality since it was in the middle of the night and cold.

When I got up and looked out the window I couldn’t believe it, it was clear and barely a breeze blowing!

It was just a few minutes after 2:00 A.M. PST…(I think that’s the time we’re in now? 🤷‍♀️ ), when I started taking my test shot.

Totality began at 2:16A.M here and I was ready for it. This image was made at 2:221A.M

The next Total Lunar eclipse to be visible in the USA won’t be until March 14, 2025. Until then my mind will be shifting from the

Moon to the Sun as there is an Annular Solar Eclipse in October 2023. The last time I photographed an Annular Solar Eclipse was back in 2012. You can see that post here . I’m hoping I can get to the sweet spot to photograph it again.

It snowed here all day yesterday and is looking magical and very much like Winter is here.

I hope you’re all having a good week, and are staying warm and safe.

Nikon D810| Nikkor 300mm f/4| PS CC 24.0.0

more to come