For the Birds

I’ve discovered traveling by RV adds a whole new dimension to my overall travel experience, and it has exposed me to experiences well beyond my wildest dreams….

Brown Pelican

…. dreams I never imagined. I never thought that traveling to the Texas Gulf Coast would stir a passion within me … a joy I couldn’t have fathomed … the joy of photographing birds. Bird photography!

Roseate SpoonbillThe first time I glimpsed the stunning pink hue of the Roseate Spoonbill had me yelling at Al to stop the truck. We were driving along Fulton Beach Road along the Gulf Coast in Texas when a shimmer of pink in shallow pond water caught my attention. I had never seen such a beautiful, yet weird, bird in my entire life. That was just the beginning of my journey into photographing birds …. the beginning of my interest in birds as a photographic subject.

Turkey VultureIt was during that visit when I became fascinated with all large birds, including the beautiful Turkey Vulture, and yes, I said beautiful. Okay, I’ll admit beautiful wasn’t the first word that came to mind when I began photographing vultures. No, that took time, and over time, an admiration for this unique creature grew, and the more I observed them, the more my admiration grew.

Did you know turkey vultures are very social and don’t kill? Fascinating! I also felt a kindred spirit with the turkey vulture. If you’d like to know more about our similar tune carrying talents, click here.

bird photography

And then there were the cranes I discovered. I think we can all agree, they are magnificent and beautiful birds. I became obsessed with cranes, so much so, that Al and I made a special trip to the International Crane Foundation located in Baraboo, Wisconsin. I was officially aย Craniac!

One of my more memorable RV excursions was camping amongst 20,000 roosting sandhill cranes. That was an unbelievable experience and just one of many reasons why I love RVing. It’s the only way to travel in my book. I’ve enjoyed adventures that can only be experienced by RVing. You can read my post aboutย sleeping with sandhill cranes here.

Sandhill Cranes

Sandhill Cranes

Yeah, I never thought I’d develop such a passion for photographing birds, but I find that they make such an interesting subject to photograph that it’s almost impossible for me to pass up the opportunity to make at least a few images …. or maybe a thousand or two when I encounter these entertaining characters.

Grebe

Wandering Wednesday theme – birds

For this weeks photo inspiration I’ve chosen the prompt birds. Do you enjoy taking photographs of birds?ย  We’d love to see your images. Leave a comment below with a link back to your blog or link back to this post in your blog. Share and connect!

Brown Pelicans

Wandering Wednesday – Ingrid’s Inspirations

Each Wednesday I post a different photo theme as a way for bloggers to share their love of photography and engage with other like minded bloggers. Perhaps this prompt will serve as a little inspiration to pick up the camera in search of a composition or a reason to go through your archives. Whether you shoot with your phone, a DSLR or something in-between, don’t be shy ๐Ÿค— share your photos!

Egyptian Duck

I wrote a post awhile back about the lessons I’ve learned regarding bird photography. If you’d like to see my failures and successes, click here to read that post.

hummingbird

Upcoming prompts – Black & White, Reflections, Sunrise …. get out and shoot or peruse those archives!

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64 thoughts on “For the Birds

  1. Great photos! I’m with you: birds are beautiful, even vultures and pelicans. Glad you are able to get out and enjoy them.

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  2. You know Dave and his birds, he has a file of his favorites which periodically show up on FB. We learned more about the Vultures here in IA since they roost on the dam. Did you know they not only spread there wings to dry off but to collect Vitamin D.

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  3. It is a rare moment that I am speechless, just ask my husband, but that is how I feel when I look at your bird photos Ingrid. There really aren’t adequate words. I’ve said before I think they are Nat Geo quality. Truly.

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  4. I also love the birds that I saw around the Gulf of Mexico. You take excellent pictures and I like the idea of watermarking your property. Is that easy?

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  5. These are all great photos! Thanks for sharing! I am with you – I share a big passion for the birds. Can’t imagine life without them around.

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  6. I am in awe of your bird photos. I must admit that my efforts are poor I just don’t have the eye for birds. Perhaps its time that I invested in yet another lens ๐Ÿ˜‰ But I agree there is nothing like RVing to increase your awareness of nature, history, geology and geography. Our caravan always comes home with little bags of leaves and rocks, shells …Oh damn I just remembered there’s a bag of coral under the settee!

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  7. Your Bird photography, Ingrid, is outstanding. You must have the patience of Job! I can’t image how long you must have wait to take some of these shots. You could publish a book of your beautiful photos. Also, I did not know those facts about the turkey vulture. Fascinating.

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  8. Great pics! Since we have moved into our RV full time, I have developed a passion for photographing old churches. I love colonial period congregational churches. I think my focus will change once we head south for the winter.

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    • You’ll find yourself drawn to different photographic subjects based on your travels. When we go back to the Midwest, it’s all about barns. In TX it’s about the birds, and in AZ my photographic genre is all over the place ๐Ÿ˜„ …. landscapes, wildflowers, architecture and food.

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  9. Pingback: Bald Eagles of Alaska – Wandering Dawgs

    • Thanks Beth – going through my archives to pick out these images brought about some fond memories. We’re still on the fence about a TX sojourn this winter, but these photographs are pulling me back to TX for more shutter action.

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  10. I totally get your passion for birds! I experienced the same thing when I moved to Florida…Iโ€™m nuts about pelicans in flight, vultures catching the wind currents and hawks. I hope to one day photograph eagles. I really struggled getting anything decent until I started photographing on shutter priority. It was exhilarating coming back after shooting and finding the majority were good pictures rather than blurry. I canโ€™t wait to get back to my photography…must be patient, House comes first. Here are a couple I had on my website. I still have lots more but these I knew were they were quickly.

    https://img1.wsimg.com/isteam/ip/387cdd90-2966-460f-91e8-7ff88ac3fbcd/99e927e3-2b57-46c2-a561-4e61f8dcf394.jpg/:/rs=w:800,h:1000,cg:true,m/cr=w:1600,h:1000,a:cc

    https://img1.wsimg.com/isteam/ip/387cdd90-2966-460f-91e8-7ff88ac3fbcd/36010e6c-b743-452e-aa58-fc0418763b24.JPG/:/rs=w:800,h:1000,cg:true,m/cr=w:1600,h:1000,a:cc

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    • Excellent images – thanks for sharing. Yep, need to shoot on shutter priority plus burst mode. I’ve learned a great deal about photographing birds via lots of trial and error. Thank goodness for digital photography ๐Ÿ˜

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    • Thank you Judy. It has taken lots of trial and error to figure out how to capture a nice image of birds, and sometimes it’s just pure luck, but always a fun challenge.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I remember your posts last year with these beautiful pictures. It inspired me to add the Texas Gulf coast to a long list of places I want to see! Most of the birds I capture are right in my front yard – from the ever present cardinal to the migrating goldfinches – I enjoy them all. This picture, however, is from our trip to Alaska last year where we were blessed to enjoy several sightings of the remarkable eagle! https://candyswhimsy.files.wordpress.com/2018/08/eagle-close-crop-2.jpg

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    • Your bald eagle image is stunning. That is one bird that I haven’t had much luck seeing let alone photographing. Perhaps that’ll become a quest of mine ๐Ÿ˜€

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  12. So happy to see your bird captures! The spoonbills are a delight to my eyes!

    Always so happy to see your bird captures! You do an amazing job!

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  13. Hi Ingrid, You photos are amazing! I really enjoyed the link to the sandhill crane trip in Arizona. What time of year are they in this spot or is it year round? We would love to check it out early next year as we are coming through Arizona. Thanks for the beautiful photos and inspiration!

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    • Whitewater Draw was an amazing experience. We stopped there the second week in February and it was cold. From what I’ve heard, the largest number of cranes are there Dec, Jan and Feb. Numbers start dropping off in Mar. The number of cranes and snow geese that winter there is predicated on the amount of water in the field which varies from year to year. Hope you get to experience it and thanks for stopping by and commenting.

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  14. Pingback: Our Feathered Friends | Two Trails One Road

  15. You know how I love those wonderful Texas Gulf birds!!! I found Southern Louisiana had some different and neat birds too!! I will tag you on a Facebook page..

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    • I know one day, we should venture a bit further east toward Douphin Island or even Pensacola for some great birding. However, I am rather content with the birding around Rockport. I’m not sure how the birding has changed after hurricane Harvey. Perhaps I’ll find out this winter (if we go – still on the fence).

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    • What a perfect post to share with us. Thank you! Often times I’ve wanted to hang out in TX longer to be there for mating season and then to see the little chicks hatch, but the concern for humidity and spring storms usually has us moving back to the desert.

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        • Thanks Nancy. It was tough to narrow down all my images, and boy do I have a ton to pick from. I had a couple of amazing days along the TX coast when I shot almost 2,000 images in a day. But then again, the camera was on burst the entire day, which is a must for birding … shutter priority and burst; the two keys for successful bird photography.

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  16. I like birds too. It’s very satisfying to get a bird in flight. I was looking for 4 legged critters yesterday, and heard a woodpecker beating on a tree. A cute downy was having breakfast.

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    • It’s fun getting distracted like that … coming across wildlife that you weren’t searching for. Hopefully you captured a few images!

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  17. You are SO right! RVng has opened a whole new world of birds to me as well. I can not capture them in photos like you but I have a deeper appreciation for their magnificance, like never before. How lucky we are to live this RV life. Thanks for sharing!

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    • I’ve never considered myself a patient person, but when I’m out in the field photographing birds, I seem to have an abundance of patience. I love it!

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    • Oh how I love Loons. Years ago, we used to vacation in northern Minnesota, and I so enjoyed watching and hearing the loons. Since we’ve been in the west, I haven’t seen a Loon in ages … sigh!

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    • You always post some of the best adventures, and of course, Athena’s photographs are always lovely. Thanks for stopping by and sharing the link.

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