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Category Archives: Yellow Warbler

A couple of days ago my brother in law called to tell me I absolutely had to go out on the internet and check out the Bill Dance fishing bloopers. He couldn’t believe that so many things had happened to one person. I told him that someone who has taped as many programs as Bill Dance would have a ton of bloopers to show for it. I did go out and watch them and couldn’t stop laughing. It is hard to believe that one person could have so many problems but trust me they can. After my gaff from a couple of weeks ago when I had a great opportunity to shoot a Bald Eagle. I saw the eagle flying toward me started focusing on him. I thought I needed a wider aperture so I turned the knob. Unfortunately, in my excitement of getting a great shot, I turned the camera off instead. I started thinking it might be a good topic for a blog.

One day my wife and I were photographing at Canyon Falls in Michigan. The water levels in the  Sturgeon River were really low so I it looked like I could work my way down from the top of the gorge to river level. There appeared to be a flat rock near the water that would make a great place to take a photo. I’m in my 70’s and not as spry as I used to be. My wife suggested it wouldn’t be a good idea to try and get where I knew there was a great picture to be had. I tried anyway but slipped on the last step. I  made some great acrobatic moves to save the tripod and camera but more importantly save myself from a fall into the Sturgeon river and probably serious injury. Morale of the story is listen to your wife. My effort would have looked great on video and I did get some nice shots of the falls.

Canyon Falls

Canyon Falls

On another occasion I drove over to Willow River State Park to photograph the ice on the waterfall. When I arrived I was really excited because there was some fantastic ice to be photographed. I hadn’t been photographing very long when I really made a big blooper. The head I use on my tripod is a Markins head. It has a knob that you use to attach the camera to the head and a similar knob to allow you to rotate the head. I was so excited that I loosened the knob that attaches the camera to the head rather than the one that allows the head to rotate. When I picked my tripod up the camera came off of the head and I watch, in slow motion, as it fell into the river. I quickly grabbed it but the camera was ruined. Fortunately the lens was ok and my photographs were still on the card. This was the last shot taken

Ice Willow Falls

Ice Willow Falls

Another big blooper occurred when I was out photographing birds along the Red Cedar River. I had my Tamron birding lens (200mm-500mm) on the camera and the camera mounted on the tripod. I set the camera on level ground and went looking along a small stream to see if I could find something else to photograph. Unfortunately the wind was blowing and all of a sudden I heard a splash and turned to see my tripod lying on the ground and my camera and lens lying in the small stream. To make matters worse the stream had a sandy bottom. The Camera and lens were DOA but with some work I was able to salvage the Head. A strong gust of wind blew a branch into the camera and over it went. Fortunately the memory card was ok. This was my last shot from that disaster.

Yellow Warbler

Yellow Warbler

Or there was the time I was photographing early in the morning in Crex Meadows. The early morning light was shining on a field of golden grass. I quickly pulled over and grabbed the camera and walked over to photograph the grass. I took a couple of photographs but thought I could get a better one if I walked off of the road and into the grass. I should have been paying more attention because I stepped off of a bank into two feet of water. Fortunately I was able to hold the camera out of the water although it took quite a while before I dried out. Moral of the story is watch where you are going.

Crex Meadows

Crex Meadows

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Although my wildflower patch is not all that large I have really enjoyed photographing it. I think next year I will enlarge it significantly and plant more flowers that will attract butterflies.

I was taking pictures of several birds taking a bath last week and started thinking I probably have a number of photos from the past of birds in the process of taking a bath or cleaning themselves after a bath.

Yellow Warbler

This is a Yellow Warbler captured taking a bath in a small stream along the Red Cedar Trail. I watched him for quite a while as he would take a bath fly up to a branch and then fly back down to the stream again.

Mallard Duck

This Mallard duck spent a considerable time preening himself after taking his bath. He became a contortionist trying to make sure each feather was just right.

American Robin

This American Robin had just been in the bird bath and was spending some time working on it’s feathers.

Grey Catbird

The Grey Catbird was busy using the bird bath in front of the house.

 

We had a bad storm on Monday and when I stopped at Hoffman Hills I noticed there were a number of large willow tree branches had blown down around the ponds. There were a large number of warblers in and around the downed branches. I spent quite a bit of time photographing the various warblers. In all I saw four different types of warblers including Yellow-rumped, Common Yellowthroat, Yellow and Cape-may.

Yellow Warbler

Common Yellowthroat

Common Yellowthroat

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler