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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

On the way down to Pismo Beach for our Anniversary week-end we took a side trip to Carrizo Plain National Monument where I had heard there was Spring Super Bloom happening. To give you a little sense of where the Carrizo Plain is located in California I’ve copied Wikipedia’s description for you. “The Carrizo Plain is a large enclosed grassland plain, approximately 50 miles long, and up to 15 miles across, in southeastern San Luis Obispo County California, about 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles.” ~wikipedia.org

You could see from miles away great swatches of yellow and orange on the hill sides, and I was so excited to see fields of flowers.

Super Bloom Carrizo Plain Nat Monument

There were Coreopsis, Two-toned Tidy Tips, Goldfields which were mostly spent, Phacelia, and Baby Blue Eyes just to name some that I saw in abundance.

The field above was mostly Leafystem Coreopsis growing I think.  Here’s two more closer looks.

Coreopsis Wildflowers-Super Bloom 2017

Coreopsis- Super Bloom 2017

We hung around the Soda Lake area for a few hours, but I could have easily spent the whole day, but we also wanted to get to our final destination and be by the beach for sunset.

I hope you all have a wonderful week-end filled with smiles and laughter!

Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm, Nikkor 20mm f/1.8g| Canon 500D close up Lens| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2017

More to come…

 

 

©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Super Bloom Carrizo Plain

Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC2017

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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Copyright © 2017 Deborah M. Zajac ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

At the end of March He-Man and I had our 36th Wedding Anniversary, but we kept it pretty QT since it fell on a week-day. We were anticipating our get-away to Pismo Beach this past week-end (April 1st & 2nd) to celebrate us.

He-Man booked a room for us right on the cliffs with a balcony with a partial view of the ocean and pool area.   The image above is the sunset Saturday evening from our balcony on the 3rd floor.  I loved this view.

The hotel we stayed in is the Shore Cliff Hotel in room 315. When we opened the door and walked down the small hallway to the main sleeping area we were surprised and delighted to find the bed covered in rose pedals (faux) and a tray loaded with two wine glasses, a pair of Swans made from Towels (towel art), a bottle of Sparkling Cider, and a card wishing us a Happy Anniversary!  Isn’t that lovely!

Shore Cliff Hotel Rm 315 Anniversary Week-end

The swans towel art and rose pedal theme was even in the bathroom.  It had double sinks- I loved that! I wish my own bathroom had room for double sinks, but really don’t want one more sink to clean. 🙂

Shore Cliff Hotel Bathroom Rm 315

I’ll show you the little kitchen area, and entertainment areas of the room too.

Rm315 Shore Cliff Hotel Pismo Beach

Entertainment Center Rm 315 Shore Cliff Hotel

The view from our balcony; late afternoon

View from Balcony of Rm 315

and a welcome party of one came to our room shortly after our arrival.  He flew up to the balcony and stayed for awhile then he flew down for a swim and bath in the pool after leaving our balcony. (I’m saying he but don’t know for sure.)   🙂

Seagull balcony Rm 315 Shore Cliff Hotel

I think that might be the Mrs. watching to make sure he gets behind his wings.  🙂

Seagull in Pool Shore Cliff Hotel_IMG_6672

We went to dinner next door where I found a great door which I’m saving for a future Thursday Doors post.

We had a lovely week-end, and enjoyed our stay at Shore Cliff Hotel and love this part of California’s coastline.

Top image: Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film|

Hotel Images: iPhone 7 Plus

All developed in PS CC 2017

I’m behind on emails and blogs again. I hope to catch up this week!

More to come…

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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

If I’m lucky I get to see and photograph a Hooded Oriole once during Spring. This year I was lucky! Isn’t he beautiful?

I was photographing the Bald Eagle when it left it’s perch and flew away. After watching it soar higher and higher into the thermal stream I turned around to head to the car for the next birding location and, there this Hooded Oriole was! It must have been watching and waiting for the Eagle to leave so it could claim the perch for a little while.

Hooded Oriole-Male

Have a great and cheery week-end everyone!

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

More to come…

 

Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Bald Eagle Female Perched_DMZ6824

Bald Eagle Talons Female

Bald Eagle Female

Nikon D700| Nikkor 200-500mm| Lexar Digital Film| PSCC 2017

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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Saturday I paid another visit to the wildlife refuge with the Anna’s Hummingbird chicks to see their progress.  Seeing them was nothing short of amazing! Each visit brings new delights, and wonder to my eyes and soul.

They were bigger and their feathers, and colors were more like Hummingbirds now.  I must have just missed Mom when I got there.

Anna's Hummingbird 3 wks old

It wasn’t long before she returned to feed them. Here’s probably the last image I’ll have of them together as a family.

Anna's Hummingbird Family 3wks

After feeding the chicks rested a minute. Then the one on the right got very active flapping its wings preparing for flight.

Spreading their Wings

Preparing for Flight

…and before I knew it it did an in flight turn just milliliters above the nest and BOOM! it was on the branch! ” Ta Da! Look! I’m as big and beautiful as Mom!”

Looking Just Like Mom

Siblings on the verge of Adulthood, and Flight.

Anna's Hummingbirds 3 weeks old

I heard yesterday that they are flying around well above the branches now. They’ll be leaving the nest today I think.

I feel so blessed and lucky to have seen these two delightful gifts of nature.

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

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Copyright ©2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Here’s the post I promised on Monday here that I would be sharing this week about a birding surprise.

After sunrise, and a little birding last Saturday Gordon, myself, and another friend went to breakfast then we headed over to another part of Don Edward’s Wildlife Refuge to check out the Anna’s Hummingbird on her nest.

I had heard from a good friend that she had had her brood of two. There were indeed two chicks in the nest, and their eyes were open!

They waited for Mama to return to the nest with food! They were so quiet. I thought they would be peeping constantly, but they didn’t.  They look too big for the nest already don’t they.  Mom must sleep on top of the nest with them smooched down into the nest to keep them warm at night.

This nest isn’t deep in the canopy either! It’s pretty exposed.

Anna's Hummingbird Chicks eyes open

When the chicks are new their Mom will leave the nest for very short periods of time. Just a minute up to 15 minutes to find food. The chicks can’t keep warm without her so she doesn’t dare leave them alone long. Once they can regulate their own temperatures and keep warm she leaves the nest to forage for food for up to 20 minutes.  This Mom would leave for 15-20 minutes, but return to do buzz or hover check several times too.

Here is the Female/Mom just returning from a food sortie.

Anna's Hummingbird Female Returns to her Brood

Two little beaks hungry and not patient anymore.

Anna's Hummingbird with Hungry Chicks

Food at last!

She eats insects and drinks nectar which she regurgitates as a liquid mixture into the open mouths of the chicks.  She’s on the go constantly hunting for food and feeding the chicks every 20 minutes! The male doesn’t help at all feeding or raising the chicks. If the male does come around the Female will chase him away b/c she finds him a threat to the chicks.

Anna's Hummingbird Feeding her Chicks

These chicks are already a couple of weeks old. At 3 weeks old they will look more like Hummingbirds, and will be testing out their wings more to get ready for flight.  Once they’re flying the Female will show them how to catch bugs, and drink nectar, and within a few days of that the chicks will fly away as adults never to return to the nest.

I can’t tell you how amazing this was to watch and photograph! It was gift!  It’s so moving, and beautiful watching her feed the chicks and knowing how dedicated she is, and how tired she must be. These images were made on March 18, 2017

I dropped by Thursday afternoon (3/23) to see them. They were still in the nest with Mama feeding them every 20 minutes. There was quite a crowd there, and I had #1 Grandson with me. He got a kick out seeing the chicks too. I didn’t break out my camera today. I was holding #1 in my arms so he could see them, but I’m hoping I can get back over once more before they fly from the nest which may be as early as a week and a half away.

For more information about Hummingbird chicks you can visit http://www.worldofhummingbirds.com/baby.php

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

Have a wonderful week-end everyone!

More to come…

 

 

 

 

 

 

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