Wild Wednesday 34/52 Rowing

Copyright ©2018 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

I met Gordon and some other friends early Saturday morning for a day of photography. We photographed the US Masters Rowing Championship meet at Lake Merritt in Oakland CA.

We got there as the sun was rising, and a little later we got golden-pink hue on the Alameda County Court House and lake.  This was the prettiest scenery I saw on Saturday.

Alameda County Court House

Then we waited for the races to begin. There were singles, 2 person teams, 4 person teams, 8 person teams, and mixed teams. Going in I knew absolutely nothing about rowing, but I did learn the difference between Sculls, and Sweeps on Saturday. It’s all about the oars.

In Sculling each team member has a pair of oars. Their boats tend to be smaller with 1, 2, or 4 rowers, and sculling boats do not have a coxswain.

Sweeps- each team member has one oar, and their boats can have 2, 4, or 8 rowers. Larger boats with 4 or 8 rowers will often times have a coxswain steering the boat.

The Coxswain is the member of the team that sits in stern of the boat, and steers the boat. The rowers have their backs facing the direction they’re going so having someone steer and call out what is needed from the rowers is necessary. They also coordinate the power, and rhythm of the rowers.  They are loud, we could hear them from clear across the lake.

2 man team- They’re sculling.  I tried panning. It wasn’t easy because they’re going slower than you think they are when trying to pan.

2 Man Team-Sculling

4 man team- Sweeps with a Coxswain

Sweeps 4 man team with Coxswain

The funniest thing I saw that day was a seagull trying to chase a drone out of its airspace.

The Drone was filming the races, and streaming a live feed back to a BIG monitor for spectators and teams to watch in the rowers staging area.  The gull never got any closer than this to the Drone during this territorial spat, but it squawked at the Drone the whole time it chased it.

Territorial Spat

A team headed to the staging area-

Rowing Team

Rowing shoes

Looking Up

Making some adjustments

Making some Adjustments

Rowing Oars

The starting line in the background

Wildflowers around Lake Merritt

It was a 3 day event. I have no idea who won in the end, but it was fun to hang out and photograph some of it, and learn a little something about rowing.  It looks like a fun sport.

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

Nikon D810| Nikkor 300mm f/4 & Nikkor 24-120mm f/4| Hoodman Digital Film| PS CC 2018

more to come…






Hybrid-Crested Pekin Mallard?

Via Flickr:
Copyright © 2013 Deborah M Zajac. All Rights Reserved

On my recent jaunt up to Lake Merritt to find the Tufted Duck I was walking past a little enclosed pond when I spotted this duck. I had to call Phil over to see it since it was unique.
Neither of us knew what the name of this duck was and we planned to do some research to see if we could figure it out. Phil got on it straight-away. He found very little information out there, but he did find a photo with a duck that looks like this one and it was called a Hybrid-Crested Pekin Mallard.
Bred for the little Pom-Pom on their heads I’m sure!
Anyone know anything about this breed?

This pond was pretty dirty  so, I did a little work in PS to clean it up, but as you see it’s still a mess. The disadvantage of a small pond I guess.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 80200@ 112m + Tamron 1.4x TC| f8| 1/250s| ISO 400| Manual Priority| Hand-held


Tufted Duck

Tufted Duck, originally uploaded by dmzajac2004-.

Via Flickr:
Photo Copyright © 2013 Deborah M Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

My friend Phil sent the link to the article about this Tufted Duck that migrates to Oakland rather than where he’s supposed to go which is Asia. Phil and I both had Thurs. afternoon free so we met at Merritt Lake to find him. The folks in the resource center were really great, they gave Phil a direction to go look. Lake Merritt is pretty big!

We went too far or so we thought so we backtracked and there he was! He swam right to us. Probably expecting us to throw in some bread crumbs. It didn’t take him long to realize we weren’t going to feed him so he swam toward the other side of the lake. Phil and I went that way and caught up with him again. It’s so neat to see native birds, even more exciting to see a rare one! My bird book says,
Rare Eurasian vag. that shows up in coastal states; accidentally well inland; often with Scaup (especially with Greater Scaup).” Stokes Field Guide Birds of No America

He is hanging around with a flock of Scaup. He blends in really well. Thank you Phil for sharing the article and letting me go with you to find him!

“Tufted ducks usually live in Asia. But each year, one ditches his flock and heads for Oakland instead. The same duck, year after year. While millions of his brethren are wintering in Thailand, he is happily paddling along Lake Merritt.”~

Read more: www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Lone-birds-of-their-specie…

Nikon D700| Nikkor 80-200mm @145mm + 1.4x Tamron TC| f/3.5| 1/400s| ISO 500| Manual Priority|hand-held