The title is inspired by the French painter Manet, and his painting of four friends having a picnic in the woods. No woods here, but the tranquility is the...
Saturday, May 8, 2010
SO excited today - the Osprey finally came within 100 feet of the dock! I heard them calling this afternoon and went down to the water in hopes of getting a few pictures. One flew on by to our neighboring point, while the other sat across the bay, calling every few minutes to keep tabs on its partner.
The opposite shore is too far away for the 200mm camera lens to capture much detail, although that embankment does make for some spectacular binocular viewing. To my delight, the osprey decided to check out our side of the bay for a change, perhaps out of curiosity and the noise of the camera shutter, or perhaps from being harassed by the kingfishers. After a short, uneventful fishing expedition, it alighted in our neighbor's tree.
I realized after about 20 minutes of contorting my body to keep the camera steady on the rail (keeping the camera body braced squarely while looking sharply upward took some doing, let me tell you) that some canoers were watching with some amusement from the opposite shore. All I can say is, when an osprey lands near you, sacrifices in poise must be made! And there is no dignified way to inform people a few hundred feet away, "I have a camera." (Like that would explain everything.)
This was a busy day for the Kingfishers across the bay as well. Both parents have been constantly scouting food, chattering so loudly that they can be heard several hundred feet away. Each time they enter their nest hole in the embankment, it sparks quite a racket! I hope to get across the bay soon with the camera in hopes of catching them close up. This is the clearest picture I have of them to date, not for lack of trying. They flew by several times today, and I just held my breath, kept the auto-focus on, and panned with them. They are seriously fast flyers! It's quite a treat to watch them with binoculars this time of year - one parent always guards the nest from a nearby tree entanglement and harshly reprimands anyone that gets within a close proximity. Both adults dive-bombed the perched osprey, which worked to my advantage today, unsettling it from it's far-off tree. Life is Good!