Tuesday 10 November 2015

Birds/Flushers and Boundary Bay

Monday Nov 9 2015 Tsawwassen Ferry Jetty Sunny and cool breeze 8c
After yesterdays 'dash and grab' performance (see previous blog) I had the whole day just go birding. The plan was to pack lunch and a flask of hot coffee, hopefully find some good birds and have lunch on the beach.
My first stop was not far along the gravel road that runs parallel to the ferry. Amongst a flock of Black Oystercatchers was a single Whimbrel. I carefully crouched down, my knees sinking into the stony beach slowly inching toward the birds so as not to alarm them. I rattled off a few shots to include both species in the frame. I was happy to wait for the birds to come closer, when out of the blue another "photographer" came barrelling down the beach between me and the birds. I know I don't have anymore more right to be there than anyone else BUT DUDE...what are you thinking! To make things worse, a women with a dog (on leash) came from behind the birds and started to take pictures with a point and shoot. Here are the results. Soon there were no birds just a few memories.

Before the flushers
Whimbrel and Black Oystercatchers before the "Flushers" arrived.

Oh well, the Whimbrel and Oystercatchers flew off to get some peace and quiet. Further down the beach I spotted what looked like a motley crew of birders. They were all looking in the same direction which meant only one thing....BIRDS!

When I arrived who do you think was there, you guessed, the dog lady with her trusty point and shoot! At least this time she tied her pet tied to a log I'm sure after getting a few stern stares from all the birders and photographers who were there. The Turnstone couldn't care less as it was pre-occupied with fattening up for the remainder of its journey.

Observing the Ruddy Turnstone performing, flipping over stones and pebbles, gobbling up anything that moved was a privilege to watch.

Ruddy Turnstone

I include this image because I like the low angle and separation of the bird from the background...

Next stop was lunch. As I poured my coffee my lunch bag took off in the wind scattering its contents into assorted flotsam on the beach. Nearby a Snow Bunting that I had seen earlier was feeding on the gravel road. It gradually got closer and closer. I sat in my car, camera balanced on the window waiting for the Snow Bunting to get close enough for a pic. Eventually I ended with three different shots I like.

Snow Bunting on the beach.

A similar background without any distractive elements.

The colours in this shot produce a warmer 'feel' than the two previous images.

So another great day was coming to a close and on my way home I decided to go off to Boundary Bay to look for American Tree Sparrows. There were none except for a small flock of Purple Finch and six Short-eared Owls.

The following three images were taken with the Nikon 200mm-500mm handheld just as the sun was setting. 
Purple Finch extracting the seeds from a Pacific Grab Apple.

 Another photographer beside me shooting a 400 F2.8 and 2x converter couldn't fit them in so quickly did the birds arrive on the scene from behind us. Handholding allowed me to react quickly enough to capture these shots. I used the D7100 and would make razor sharp prints to 16x20.

Until next time, take care and good birding!

"It's never too late to start birding"

John Gordon
BC Canada

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful shots my friend. At least you got a shot of the whimbrel the poor whimbrel kept getting continually flushed by photographers and finally it decided to take off for good never to return the whole day.