The last two weeks has been the birth of many of Mother Natures animals. Swans being the heaviest flying bird in North America makes it an easy target.Slow down there Hunter’s, The swans are close to shore, and if you have patience and a 200mm zoom lens the shots are plentiful.All images were mistakingly shot with at the iso set at 250, Should have figured that-out when the shutter speed registered too high when set on aperture priority.The pictures were all shot in CAMERA RAW, processed today June 7 2011. Live and learn, and, more Coffee in the morning.
Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be. ~Duane Michals
Below is a sequence of the swans wings
I didn’t want to tell the tree or weed what it was. I wanted it to tell me something and through me express its meaning in nature. ~Wynn Bullock
If I could tell the story in words, I wouldn’t need to lug around a camera. ~Lewis Hine
The photograph itself doesn’t interest me. I want only to capture a minute part of reality. ~Henri Cartier Bresson
Conditions: Sunny/Humid/slight mist
Camera : Nikon D90
Lens: AF 80-200mm f/2.8D ED
Settings: Aperture Priority, Vivid, Camera Raw
Shutter Speed: .750 sec, F stop 9.5 on most images
Time: 10AM to 11AM
Shots taken on beautiful Harbourfront Trail, and Cootes Paradise Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
The Canada goose has a long black neck and head with a white band on its cheeks that runs under its chin like a strap. It has black feet and a light tan body with lighter brown or white under its tail. Its black bill haslamellae, or teeth, around the outside edges that are used as a cutting tool. Males and females look alike, although females are usually a little smaller than the males.
The Canada goose breeds and winters in most of Canada and the United States.
The Canada goose can be found in a wide variety of habitats including lakes, bays, rivers and marshes. It often feeds in open fields and grasslands.
On land, the Canada goose eats a wide variety of grasses, including salt grass and Bermuda grass. It uses its bill to yank the grass out of the ground. It also eats corn, rice and wheat. In the water, the Canada goose sticks its head and upper body under the water, stretches its neck out and uses its bill to scoop up food from the mud and silt.
The female Canada goose lays her eggs between March and June. She will lay between four to ten whitish eggs in a nest made of grass, reeds and moss and lined with down. The nests are usually on the ground near water. The female hatches the eggs and turns them over often to evenly heat them.The male will guard the female and the nest and will call out a warning if danger approaches. It takes about a month for the eggs to hatch. The chicks break out of the shell with an egg tooth on the top of their bills. It may take them one to two days to completely break out of the shell. The chicks will fly when they are between 40 and 70 days old. Most Canada geese will mate for life.
Canada geese migrate in large V-shaped formations. They honk loudly while they are flying. They migrate at a slow pace. Male Canada geese can be very aggressive they will often attack predators with their wings and bill.
Winds rush through pine boughs, flowers scent on the breeze permeate the air, a pungent smell wafts from the pavement of a vacant lot after a rain – these and more are waiting to be experienced in nature’s neighbourhood. There’s adventure in the unknown, and even the familiar looks different when it is visited with the intent of discovering what has been looked at and not yet seen, heard yet never listened to. Whether its your backyard or neighbourhood, a nature-centre lands, a wilderness area or a park in the city, there are always discoveries awaiting.
A trip into natural surroundings or the local community is a chance to study the environment firsthand. Consider David Suzuki who is celebrating 30 years with the Nature Of Things program where he tackles issues on environment, wildlife, technology and medicine. David Suzuki was a professor and geneticist. He has written 40 books. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and a Companion of the Order of Canada. He points out climate change and its time to visit plants and animals in their homes, to learn wilderness survival skills.This experience will be filled with wonder and aesthetic beauty of nature in the neighbourhood. Watch for unexpected pleasures, like a dew-covered Spider’s web is gossamer work of art. A Frog (frawg) jumped out of the pond just ahead of you saying “ribbit.” But, there are so many kinds of frogs, to identify its sound, you would be correct to bark, grunt, honk, peep, or twang, too. You could also give a deep jug-o-rum sound – the call of a bull-frog.
Frogs are amphibians and as this little girl found out their are built for fast swimming and giant leaps. In fact, the leopard frog can jump 1.5 meters which is twelve times its length. Now look at the wetlands as marsh adapted birds are using them for nesting, like the red-wing blackbirds, and mallard ducks and swans.
Within your neighbourhood you spot a Robin (rahb-in) known for its cheerful songs. Robins are closely related to bluebirds, wood thrushes and hermit thrushes – all known for their musical calls. You observe the robin hopping on a city lawn. It stops now and then , tips its head to one side, and sometimes grabs an earthworm and pulls it from the soil.
People once thought that a Robin tilts its head to one side to listen for the sound of a worm near the surface.
However, a robin sees best to either side, not straight ahead, so by tilting its head, it can spot a worm or other animals hidden in the grass, such as, caterpillars and spiders. You look at the Earthworm (wuhrm) in the Robin’s beak and sometimes the earthworm is called “the night crawler.”” What worms do is mix and move soil plus these quiet, crawling earthworms are good for the soil and the plants growing in the soil. You take out your magnifying glass and inspect the worm at closer range. Then on the pavement you notice a Pigeon (pij-uhn) walking with a jerky motion. These birds are descendants of “rock doves”. As the Pigeon flies with about 20 others to a rooftop you notice these places are like the cliffs where rock doves lived long ago. Then you look up the Pigeon up in the Hamilton Naturalist Club’s Head-of-the-Lake Pocked Nature Guide , a seasonal guide to nature describing plants and animals in the Hamilton/Burlington area. It this Nature Guide they describe common and rare mammal species, birds, wildflowers and trees. As a budding naturalist a new interest is created in looking for the physical aspects of the places you find plants and animals.
Down the hill is a nature trail in Princess Point, off Cootes Paradise. Along this trail you decide to do a Deer Walk. Here, it is imperative to listen carefully and compare the” intensity of sounds” heard with and without “deer ears” which are very sensitive to any sound. And, a White-Tail Deer will signal danger by raising their tails to show a white patch underneath. Pulling out a Notebook to make field notes of what your experience felt like on the Deer Walk, is a good idea. Then out jumps a Rabbit (rab-it) on your path. As they only eat plants , rabbits are found where there are plenty of low-growing plants. A lop-eared rabbit has ears that may be two feet long or 0.6 meter, like in the story of “The Rabbit With The Air-Conditioned Ears ” – they needed to be large. A Red Squirrel also called “the chickaree” climbs up an Oak tree trunk for acorns and hangs almost upside down. High overhead you spot a Turkey Vulture (vuhl-chuhr) gliding in the air. Although it flies closer to the ground than other vultures because odours in the air can guide it to a decaying carcass. Therefore, the Turkey Vulture has an unusually good sense of smell. In Louise Unitt’s article The Bird Detective she says ” I thought of my friends who never take walks…for there was nothing to see. I was amazed and grieved at their blindness. I longed to open their eyes to the wonders around them; to persuade people to love and cherish nature.”
Source: Scholastic Encyclopedia of Animals, The Wood Duck, Keepers of the Earth, Hamilton Naturalist Club