An American Robin Reflects (His Turn)

My previous post ensured that Mr. Robin would receive his turn on showing off his beautiful profile!

A few days ago, this American Robin had been feeding just a few feet away from a Killdeer in the small tidal inlet along our community’s boundaries early morning shortly after the sun had risen.  What luck to discover these two birds reflecting in the still waters on my way to work.  Sure made my drive in a little chipper!

Just as the Killdeer did, this Robin gave me so many positions of perfect reflections, I cannot just post a couple.   :-)

American Robin - Male

American Robin – Male

(If the next photo is too large for you to view all at once, please double-click for full version!)

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(I liked how his foot's reflection appeared in this one.)

(I liked how his foot’s reflection appeared in this one.)

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The photos of this Robin and the Killdeer in my previous post will definitely go in my favorites folder!  :-)

Have a great week everyone!

A Killdeer Reflects

Leaving early yesterday morning for work, I swung past our community’s small tidal inlet behind the tennis courts for a quick sneak-peek of who might be resting or feeding.  The sun is to my back here in the mornings.  The tide was out.  The best time to check!

I was wonderfully surprised to find a Killdeer with a buddy.  The buddy comes later.

I did not have my teleconverter on my 70-200mm lens.  I am sooo disappointed about that!  But I am still very happy with the cropping I was able to do to bring him closer to the screen.

The Killdeer offered me a wonderful session as I photographed from behind the tall dead marsh grass, shooting between the stalks.  (And not always successful as they swayed!)  I had a little difficulty with the partial shading too.

You know me, I have a tough time picking just one or two of a good thing.  :-)

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_DSC0156-1 41014 _DSC0157-1 41014I told you!  :-)

And so who was the Killdeer’s buddy?  An American Robin.  Here’s my best shot of both together in one frame.  I couldn’t believe I finally got the opportunity with both giving a side body reflection at the same time.  That’s called luck!

Killdeer and American Robin

Killdeer and American Robin

Mr. Robin doesn’t want to be outdone and will show off his reflections in my next post.

Thanks for stopping by and have a super Spring weekend!

Geese Fly-By

Last Saturday morning out on my balcony, I heard then saw two Canada Geese heading across Marshy Creek towards me.   Took a couple distant photos as they approached, but figured they would turn left & away as they got closer to me.  Luck!  They turned to the right and gave me a close fly-by, along with a serious ‘look’….

Canada Geese

Canada Geese

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_DSC0105-1 4514And off they went on their day of adventure!  :-)

Osprey Return To Oyster Cove & Kent Narrows Area

All is good for now, but a whirlwind of activity has occurred since my last post, limiting my personal computer time at home.  Amidst that time also included a vacation to South Carolina and Florida in search for R&R and warmer temps (got great R&R but wasn’t too much warmer lol).  Apologies to the bloggers I follow, I’ll be back with ‘likes’ but may forgo comments for a bit until I catch up.  Thanks friends!

We left on vacation just before our area’s Osprey were to arrive (you can ask hubby, I complained ALOT about this but vacay had to be when we went or no-go).  Soooo….I missed their return!  This season it was our Osprey who watched me return to the area.  :-)

(Sorry that some of the following photos are poor in quality, I wanted to show the action or for record.)

Within five minutes of getting home on a rainy/foggy evening, I checked out our Oyster Cove community’s platform and took a photo of the nest.  I found someone had been there with some nesting materials.  :-)

Oyster Cove Osprey Nest Platform - 3/29/14

Oyster Cove Osprey Nest Platform – 3/29/14

No Osprey sightings and I had my hands full unpacking.  The next foggy morning, I was happy to discover the Osprey pair had successfully returned to the southend Kent Narrows Channel Marker #3, already protecting a nice size nest.

Southend Kent Narrows Channel Marker #3 - this Osprey pair has returned!  3/30/14

Southend Kent Narrows Channel Marker #3 – this Osprey pair successfully returned!

I’ve already witnessed this pair using our nest platform as a perch to eat a fish just as they did last year.  You may recall this pair kept another pair of Osprey from taking possession of our platform last year by also stealing their nesting materials for their own nest.

A wet male Osprey from KNCM #3 eating in the rain.

The male Osprey from KNCM #3 eating in the rain.

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Check out those talons!

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He might be wet, but what a beauty!

When another Osprey flew close by, this male Osprey got into a defense stance to protect his food and perch.

Male Osprey in a defense stance, protecting his food.

Male Osprey in a defense stance.

The other Osprey moved on, but it wavered this male Osprey’s comfort level and so decided to take his dinner and fly back to the KNCM #3 where his Mrs. was busy working on their nest.

However, the next day and since, several times I’ve seen territory-defending going on.  Osprey vs. Osprey…..

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Leaving the platform to avoid an incoming angry Osprey.

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Round and round, trying to attack each other.

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Attack!  (Buffleheads in the background scattering from the chaos!)

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Talons extended mean serious business!

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These territory-defending attacks can go on for a couple minutes.  It gets quite intense, I catch myself holding my breath while I try and capture some of the attacks as they circle around!

Couple evenings later, I watched another interaction occur, but this time it involved a pair of American Bald Eagles who were passing through.  Which was not to the liking of the male Osprey from KNCM #3, who took after one of the Eagles.  The second Eagle kept going but this one had no choice but to respond to the attacking Osprey.

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American Bald Eagle (largest) Vs. Osprey

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American Bald Eagle Vs. Osprey

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American Bald Eagle Vs. Osprey

The Eagle got tired of the Osprey and followed his mate in the sky.  The male Osprey flew back to his platform in triumph.

I captured this male Osprey yesterday morning as he was fluffing his feathers on our platform.  The photo shows more nesting material has been added since the evening before.  I don’t know if he brought them.

Male Osprey

Male Osprey enjoying the morning’s sunrays.

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Announcing to a passing Osprey, “this is my territory”.  The passing Osprey didn’t respond and kept going.

Welcome back Osprey!  Our community is thrilled with the return of the Osprey.  They are a sign of Spring on the Chesapeake Bay and are very entertaining to watch.  It is our hope with fingers crossed that this year a pair will take possession of our nest platform for the season for some close-up Osprey family action.  :-)

 

Breakfast With An Eagle

I had breakfast with an Eagle this past Saturday.

We had just experienced a previous day of very warm temps (a tease from Mother Nature).  The early morning sunrise was gorgeous.   The beginning of another teasingly warm day could already be felt.  Our ice-over had mostly melted away.

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Sunrise over Marshy Creek and Lippincott’s Channel Marker #3

I with my cup of coffee (and binoculars and cameras).  Mr. Eagle arrived on Lippincott’s Channel Marker #3 with his breakfast.

American Bald Eagle

American Bald Eagle

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As I sipped and watched, he ate and watched.  No words needed amongst friends.

Hard to beat a breakfast like this!

Canvasbacks In Flight

Two posts prior, I expressed how lucky our community was to have Canvasbacks so close to our shorelines due to Marshy Creek’s recent freeze-over.  The Canvasbacks have continued to visit daily, but not near as close since the ice is breaking apart as it weakens and melts and Marshy Creek is beginning to open back up.

I was off this past Thursday due to the winter snow/ice storm that most of the East Coast suffered through and took on the challenge of trying to capture Canvasbacks in flight as more and more kept dropping in to the raft where Marshy Creek was opening up.  I found it not so easy, lol, the two photos I’m sharing aren’t that good.  I’ll blame it on the overcast!  But they were comical and fun to watch.

Canvasback males and females dropping into the raft

Canvasback males and females dropping into the sleeping raft

_DSC0127-2 2-13-14I kept trying but wasn’t successful.  That afternoon the sky had lightened more.  While watching them for a bit, a part of the raft was separating and began to come towards me, turning & headed to the right to pass our Osprey nest platform pole.

Canvasbacks at the base of our Osprey nest platform

Canvasbacks at the base of our Osprey nest platform

Just before the Eagle arrives

Just before the chaos….

Minutes later, the raft passing by quickly took flight.  As I was trying to lock on them, I had a flock of Mallards fly within 15 feet in front of me, scattering as fast as they could as they suddenly saw me.  (They scared me too, lol.)  With all this chaos, I quickly thought “Eagle” as I stayed on the Canvasbacks.

Canvasbacks in a frantic flight

Canvasbacks in a frantic flight

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Looking back to my left, a smaller raft of Canvasbacks were still in the water, moving swiftly in the same direction.  It’s not safe in the back of the raft and you can see the last were already starting to fly when I started photographing them.

Another raft of Canvasbacks moving nervously, the back already taking flight

Another raft of Canvasbacks moving nervously, the back already taking flight (there are four Ruddy Ducks in the foreground)

That triggers them all to take flight

That triggers them all to take flight

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Airborn!

I really like the next shots as the Canvasbacks turned and flew over the ice.

Over the ice

Over the ice

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Not sure what happened on this shot but I thought it was cool-looking in an abstract or 'trippy' way

Not sure what happened on this shot but I thought it was cool-looking in an abstract or ‘trippy’ way  :-)

So what did cause all the commotion, frightening away the waterfowl?  I spotted the Eagle flying in.

The Eagle landed on the ice very close to where the Canvasbacks were and I was lucky to see the mate join him/her.

American Bald Eagle

American Bald Eagle

Mr. and Mrs.

Mr. and Mrs. Eagle

The pair of Eagles just stood and screamed numerous times, letting all know they were there.  (I think that was already figured out.)  The pair then took flight over to Lippincott’s channel marker where they continued to let everyone know they were around.

American Bald Eagles on Lippincott's Channel Marker

American Bald Eagles on Lippincott’s Channel Marker

The pair departed thereafter in opposite directions and just as quickly I saw them both back together in the sky, one with a fresh meal dangling in its clutches.  They landed on the osprey nest platform across Marshy Creek at CBEC and enjoyed their feast.  It was hours later but the Canvasbacks did return for the evening.

All goes to show the Eagle does reign the Chesapeake Bay area’s waters!

Happy Valentine’s Day – Canada Geese Style

This pair of Canada Geese visited our berm yesterday and at one point they were so close together, I saw the chance of a ‘heart’ appearing.  Here’s the best of what I captured…..

They 'heart' each other.....sweet!

They ‘heart’ each other…..sweet!

Happy Valentine’s Day, Everyone!
:-)

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