December 8, 2016 ~ It is bitterly cold here on the West Coast of Canada (Vancouver Island) right now we have lost our deluge of rain and have a dusting of snow. These small Anna’s Hummingbirds are amazing how they have adapted to this cold weather. One thing that is an advantage for me is they are perching more in the sun any chance they get. Today I managed to capture what I consider my best ever humming bird photograph. Enjoy.
November 9, 2016 ~ Visited a favourite haunt with a photographer friend to check for the return of wintering Trumpeter Swans. No swans but a multitude of California Sea Lions feeding on the returning Chum Salmon. It was a stellar day watching and photographing the sea lions feeding with the seagulls swooping in to clean up the scraps. The sea lions have very messy table manners. The seine fishing fleet was also out in full force. The preservation behaviour of the salmon was fascinating…they hovered as close to the shore as possible out of reach of the sea lions. Dorsal fins and the upper tail fins were sticking above the surface. The trees surrounding the beach were full of eagles waiting for low tide to feast on the expired salmon left on shore. It was a day not to be missed.
Flipping Fish © Pat Haugen
Low Flight © Patricia Haugen
It is the beginning of May and there is activity everywhere if you take time out to look and have the patience to wait. On a jaunt to some favourite spots in Victoria, Esquimalt Lagoon was out because a Volvo commercial was being filmed, oh well, move on. This was actually fortuitous. The next stop, Albert Head Lagoon I managed to capture the best flight photos of blue heron plus the bonus was watching and trying to photograph him handle a large fish to orient it for a quick swallow head first.
Lunch © Patricia Haugen
Unlucky Fish © Patricia Haugen
Mr. Grumpy © Patricia Haugen
Love is in the Air © Patricia Haugen
She is Mine © Pat Haugen
This large male Trumpeter has hung out with several Mute swans for the past few years possibly thinking he was one of them. Last year he discovered his voice whereas they can only hiss. This year he has finally found a friend, a young Trumpeter swan. Feeling very possessive and protective he puts the run on a pair of Mute swans if they get close or just because they are in the vicinity of where he wants to land. I hope you enjoy these few photos as much as I have enjoyed watching their antics.
You are Out of Here…Now © Pat Haugen
The Chase © Patricia Haugen
Togetherness © Patricia Haugen
Now this was one very smart Wood Duck. He had figured out where the best Reifel Bird Sanctuary restaurant was. He was a duck who chose to get out of the water, get airborne and eat at a bird feeder designed for smaller birds such as Redwing Blackbirds and House Sparrows. He was very happy to share what was on offer with them and they did not seem to mind him. The bonus for me, it allowed an easy great close up of a difficult duck to get a decent image of because they are forever hiding in branches on the edge of ponds.
I finally managed to capture Manway at the Pacific Northwest Raptor Centre in Duncan on Vancouver Island “Coming In” talons first. Unfortunately, it is in winter light on a cold wet day but I still like the image because you get an idea of his size.
Here you can see the concentration an eagle, Manway, at the Pacific Northwest Raptor Centre in Duncan puts into his landing.
It is not always necessary to have the eyes and beak of a bird to have a good image. I like the symmetry of this Tundra Swan in Reykjavik and of course was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time when he decided to stretch his wings.
I have just returned from an across Canada road trip where in spite of the cold weather during May and June this year I was fortunate to capture the antics of Newfoundland’s provincial bird in beautiful light. The only problem I seem to have is I have too too many photographs of these little fellows to choose from. This image was taken near Elliston.
Lately, all I seem to be posting under Featured Photos are birds but that is what winter offers here on our grey, wet and foggy east coast of Vancouver Island. This little Barrow’s Golden Eye was perfect eye candy for me while going through his bath ritual in ‘pea soup fog’ at Esquimalt Lagoon. Because of the fog there is no glint in his eye but the pose was definitely worth a photo.
Today, fingers numb with cold, I was a very happy girl watching and photographing the Trumpeter Swans getting into prime condition for their long flight north to the Yukon and Alaska. This photo is uncropped and is pure luck with the dark overcast sky covering the sun. Just being able to see them fly and hear the air move through their wings overhead is a treat in itself…a great reward for being out on a cold January day.