Today’s Picture Session.

I had high hopes when I woke this morning we would have a calm day for a change. It was until 7:30am my hopes for a Bar-B-Que were dashed on the rocks of reality; it returned to 25 mph and has been there all day. I placed my back to the wind and began taking pictures.

I didn’t have to wait too long until this Turkey Vulture came in low with it’s beak to the wind bouncing in the wind along the far side levee. At just the right distance for a nice landscape/nature image the details on the bird are good.

Vultures are hardy creatures, I don’t remember a day when I was out and they weren’t. Sometimes they crowd the sky drawing attention to themselves not only from us humans but their neighbors of the sky. Many times birds of different species will join them; however none have the stamina of the large scavengers.

The Seagulls have returned as well and it’s good to see them as an indicator the other critters will soon follow their lead. I continue to photograph many of them if for no other reason than practice focusing on flying birds. Most of these photos were keepers, on occasion that happens forcing me to delete perfectly good images. But that’s the way of it, take 1,000 pictures and keep 100, I’m looking for detailed images of birds doing something out of the ordinary. One never knows what’s going to happen in nature a Hawk may come form nowhere and grab an Egret for example; but more than likely it’s a small bird pecking the tail of a predator.

I took a lot of images of the waterbirds, they make good photos but it gets a bit old to feature birds against a blue sky. What ever the case SeaGulls continued to fly past me all morning, as long as they do I will take their pictures; perhaps they figured that out.

They enjoy flying into the wind, while doing so I observed one that mimics a maneuver I have seen the crows exercise.Two Gulls were flying away from me quite a bit upwind; perhaps 100 yards. They were flying along when one of them folded up its wings and fell toward the ground spreading its wings to arc skyward mere feet above the water. I have no idea why they do that, some animal behavior Biologists hypothesize birds may enjoy play time. My belief is we have no idea how intelligent any of our planetary fellow occupants really are; they are brighter than we may think. If we have visitors from other planets why do we assume they think we are the smartest occupants of Earth? They may be here to speak with the Whales, Elephants or perhaps Crows.

Terns are sharing the slough with the Seagulls, I’m not sure if it’s an overlap or some are here to stay. Terns are fast diving birds, the goal when photographing them is to capture images of them hitting the water as they go for fish. Often they make it a bit easy as they will dive into the same spot many times offering the opportunity to set the camera up in the best spot. However easy I have yet to take a photo of that activity resulting in a usable image.

Wildfires remain burning throughout the West over 12 in California; the last count I heard was 80 throughout the Western States. We haven’t had much smoke from them including those that are quite close. Two days our air quality was reduced however the haze was carried away when an offshore wind blew it out to sea then Eastward. With the nasty gram weather the rest of the country is experiencing the rain should drive the smoke into the ground where all smoke eventually ends up.

Jacques Lebec Natural Self Reliance

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