Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bring on Spring!

Spring has for sure arrived finally. I have been busy with our new chihuahua puppy Jack, planting my flower garden and pots, and enjoying time spent outdoors on my patio watching and listening to all the bird activity. I've also been attempting to get some practice in on my 'new' camera and have finally deciphered how to shoot in manual and set my own aperature and shutter speed. I am also trying to master my tri-pod. One would think it would be a simple device to operate, but it can be tricky with all of its knobs. So even though I have not taken any spectacular shots lately, I have been getting in a bit of practice for when that perfect shot opportunity arises! Here is the relaxing view from my patio this last weekend.

This afternoon I heard some commotion outside and went to check. It was two male Mallard ducks 'discussing' some business. I thought it might be a fun picture, so grabbed my camera. By the time I got back, the discussion was over, but there were now three male Mallards, and another unidentified duck. They were far enough away that I knew the pictures wouldn't be the greatest, but took a few snaps anyways. The unidentified duck turned out to be either a female or young male Common Goldeneye. I'm gonna assume it was a female given the behavior of the three male Mallards!

Every time I leave my house or come home, I drive by a particular Red-necked Grebe's 2nd annual nest atop of a floating orange life jacket. It's nothing fancy, but seems to provide these pair of grebes a suitable nest each year. I was excited to get pictures this year since I have a better zoom camera now. I parked my car behind the cabin that the nest is by, and used the cabin as a blind while I adjusted all my settings. Zoomed right in on this pretty lady duck, as she sits on her nest. Her mate is never too far away. The nest is only about 25 or 30 feet from the shore. I'll be looking forward to seeing the baby chick. Only thing is, once the chick hatches, they are off to explore the lake and will no longer hang around the nest. My main chance to get pictures of a baby grebe riding on it's parents back will be in my bay with the resident grebes nest there each year. They defend the bay as their own most of the summer. I think I saw a grebe possibly nesting on the island when I looked through the binoculars the other day. The bay pair I was just talking about was over by the island squabbling and raising a rucus. As I looked through the binoculars, I saw a grebe (I think) ON the island. Maybe I can confirm that at a later time.

We are gearing up for the big Memorial Day weekend here at the lake. The official beginning of summer. Actually, it is just the beginning of the busy season, when all the summer neighbors show up. After the long winter, it is good to see everyone. By the summer's end, it's good to see them go and have the place to ourselves again! The weather is not supposed to be great this weekend, of course. When is it ever great on a holiday summer weekend? So we are in for 60'ish and 40% chance of showers. Enjoy your Memorial weekend!

1 comment:

  1. Great photos Sherrie :) See ya Saturday!! CROSS YOUR FINGERS FOR NO RAIN!!!!!!