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New Life

Discussion in 'Birds' started by PJohnP, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Life is funny. We all get busy with the hustle, bustle, and tussle of keeping our heads above water, only to find out that we're actually standing on dry land. Nonetheless, we still strive incessantly towards "staying ahead".

    I was recently in west Texas on assignment, with temperatures in the later day well above 100F, sometimes 105F. Despite being a "dry heat", that's darned hot ! And in that heat, inside, outside, and travelling between, I was running flat out to try and complete the work of the moment.

    One of my colleagues mentioned that he knew where some birds were nesting but that he couldn't identify them, asking my help in telling him what type of birds these were. I agreed, and drove over to the location with the sun yet high in the late afternoon, no breeze, and absolutely no cover near to the nests.

    Looking at the adults, I quickly saw that these were Western Kingbirds, highly territorial, and extremely unhappy at an interloper in the area. They immediately flew above my head with fast chattering calls of disapproval. I walked around several nests in various stages, some with birds crowding the nest, closely intertwined to stay perched within the boundaries of the nest, some with larger nestlings keening for food, and then...

    I spotted one nest with small movements, few sounds, but the occasional flicker of colour, and realised that these were very recently hatched chicks. I took a number of photos with different angles, but one chick in particular was insistent in its actions, drawing me back to it as a subject again and again.

    D100, 200-400mm AFS/VR, TC14EII (net 640mm), f/8, 1/160s, processed in NC and PS, uncropped

    And in an instant, all of my trepidations about what work I had to do that evening, the next day, and the weeks to come fell away like last autumn's leaves dropping in a flurry. Some moments are indeed wondrous.

    Always shoot.

    John P.
  2. MontyDog


    Jan 30, 2005
    #1064 - You have an error in your SQL syntax;
  3. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Thank you for sharing that with us.

  4. Wow, what an incredible shot! One doesn't often get an opportunity to share moments like this. Thanks, John.

    aka beaucamera
  5. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    There is no doubt in my mind that photography has gone a very long way in restoring my life balance. Before I got my cam, I was working 100+ hours a week, 52 weeks a year. No hiking, no exercise at all. It eventually led to my heart 'procedure'.

    You've just illustrated one of those restorative moments that many of us have experienced.

    Thanks for the reminder. I need to go shoot. :wink:
  6. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA

    Like you, I absolutely have moments when shooting that will melt away everything bad that has happened that day..or anything upcoming that is stressing me out.

    For me as a bird / wildlife / l;landscape shooter, nature has a way of bringing an inner piece that even a Xanax can't :) 

    Ooops..disd I say that?

    By the way...this is a great shot of this little guy. I tried to get near to an Eastern Kingbird nest a week ago and was literally attacked by the parents. Good thing that they aren't big!
  7. that made my day John
  8. eng45ine


    May 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Hey John...or anyone,

    I shot this guy in early June and don't know what species he is...but he looks like the guy you posted. Is mine the same species as yours?

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Thanks for your help identifying these guys!
  9. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Gale :

    Thanks so much for the supportive comment.

    One of these days, I'll be back in FL, and we'll find some birds of interest together (and you can try the true beast on your camera).

    John P.
  10. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Virginia :

    Glad to assist ! The more of these that we share, the better for all of us.

    Thanks for the kind thoughts.

    John P.
  11. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Frank :

    There's a definite reason that I use that tagline when I post photos !

    John P.
  12. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Re: John

    Jim :

    I won't even go close to that discussion.

    Thanks for the kind thoughts. The Western Kingbirds are every bit as protective, but I wasn't placed for easy strafing. :lol:

    John P.
  13. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Dave :

    Glad to help ! :D 

    John P.
  14. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Frank :

    Don't think they're the same. Different nest materials, different construction, different placement. I have no idea what else they are...

    John P.
  15. Great post, John. :) 

    I find that taking time to enjoy the natural wonders of this planet we live on to be a wonderful way to put life into perspective.

    Thanks for sharing this with us.
  16. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Dennis :

    Thanks for the kind thoughts.

    I'm a big believer in seeing what's around me, not bemoaning what isn't there. As a result, whenever I travel (or even at home), I'm lucky enough to see great and wonderful things everywhere.

    Life is good.

    John P.
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