Category Archives: nature

Thankful Thursday #thankfulthursday

I have so much to be thankful for…my awesome husband, children and grandchildren, my parents, siblings, in-laws and friends are at the top of my list!

2nd is the beauty that surrounds me in simplicity and wonder.

Mule Deer Buck
Mule Deer Buck with unequal antlers
Merganser Young'uns
Merganser family stick close together
Lazy leaf floating through the reflections
Lazy leaf floating through the reflections
Crescent Moon
Crescent Moon – men walked there
cedar waxwings
Cedar Waxwings stop to chat

and the beauty even feeds me!

Apple tree is stressed from a dry summer but still producing
Apple tree is stressed from a dry summer but still producing
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Wildlife Photography

I’ve never taken a class.  I use auto-focus more than any other setting.  I use a Canon SX40 HS with a 35x optical zoom.  I’m not here to teach you anything about photography.

Hummingbird fishing lure?
Hummingbird fishing lure?

I just enjoy wildlife so I want to preserve the moment.  And I love the attention to detail that God has in His creations!

Female or youth Rufous Hummingbird
Female or youth Rufous Hummingbird

I have to admit, though, some kinds of wildlife almost seem like more work than they are worth.  I like to catch the unique markings so I can make a good identification.  But hummingbirds don’t usually sit still for very long.

Rufous in flight
Rufous in flight

If I have enough light and patience, and if luck is on my side, I might capture the little hummer in flight AND in focus!  They are SO fast!  There were 4 of them fighting over the feeders and flowers this evening.

Action shots are my favorites
Action shots are my favorites

These are the treasure shots though.  The captures I never expect.  I’d been intentionally trying to catch the hummer with his tail spread but he just wasn’t cooperating.  The spread tail is a threatening or warning position so they are ready to chase when it’s spread.  I focused on him as he was sitting on the flower and decided to snap at the next movement I saw.  After I took it I thought I’d missed him completely.  I love finding these treasures on my laptop after I download photos from my camera.

Happy snapping!  🙂

Elk Calves Romping

Why are babies (and little children) just naturally happy?

[youtube https://youtu.be/aLPZuLB2BBw]

“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”  Matthew 18:2-6

elk calves
Elk calves playing in the field

Remembering Elder Packer’s teachings about the importance of children in our lives; even if we can’t have any of our own:  “And a Little Child Shall Lead Them”

Otter family on the Alsea

The otter family can be quiet when they want to.  This family has 4 kits.  The fourth is up in the grass outside the picture frame.

Otter family on Alsea River
Otter family on Alsea River

They were swimming downriver when the one in the video below saw a mudcat (sculpin) that it decided to have for lunch.  I was surprised at how long he kept after that fish until he caught it.  Based on the otter’s moves, that sculpin was pretty experienced at evading danger!

[youtube https://youtu.be/YHpYztlUybM]

Butterflies, Dragonflies and the flowers that attract them

We’ve got a few wildflowers to attract the birds and butterflies.  I don’t know what most of them are.  I think the ones I enjoy most are the ones that are not so obvious.  They are like a hidden treasure when I stumble upon something I haven’t previously noticed.  Look at these adorable little blue flowers!  The flower isn’t even as big as my little fingernail.

blue, yellow and white wildflowers
Tiny wildflowers

The Western Swallowtail butterfly is such a busy little thing!  I haven’t seen one land yet!  It’s really hard to get a focused photo of a butterfly when they won’t sit still.

Western Swallowtail
Western Swallowtail

A dragonfly’s head is almost all eyes.  I just read, this morning, about dragonflies:  A funny fact is that the dragonfly has 6 legs but cannot walk.  Dragonflies have up to 30,000 facets in each eye, with a 360 degree view, but they can’t see details very well.  Humans can see better than a dragonfly but only to the front and side.

dragonfly
Male, Whitetail Skimmer dragonfly

This is a male, Whitetail Skimmer dragonfly.  The female’s body is brown instead of white.