Saturday, April 30, 2016

Skunk Dance

I have been so busy taking spring woodland photos that editing is getting behind. I pulled a couple camera trap cards yesterday and just have to share this skunk dance. I'm sure there is a good reason for this behavior, other than to clean its feet in the leaves.

Back to editing.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


For some reason fear and snakes go together, at least for me. Garter snakes typically slither away as fast as possible when surprised by a six foot giant walking past them. I have had a couple experiences during mating season when the snakes are curious and actually advance toward the camera lens. I don't know if this is because of a reflection in the lens or the lens looks like an opening to explore. It was much more relaxing recording this behind a tripod than using a 100 mm macro while laying on the ground trying to get a still shot.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

April Shower

What does an intelligent, rational nature photographer do with a new camera? He goes out in the rain to test it. I have been waiting for an opportunity to test the slow motion video features on my Sony RX10ii and this was a perfect opportunity. I have previously tried filming frogs jumping, it worked but I didn't get enough material for a story.

Technical: The camera had some problems in the rain. The LCD would display an error message but the electronic viewfinder continued to work. After thoroughly drying it all is back to normal. An eye dropper will also be used to place the water drops within the frame. The four raindrops in this piece took half an hour to capture.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Virginia Bluebells

I was out yesterday photographing wildflowers in the rain and the sun came out just as I found these bluebells. I have only seen them once or twice. There is a Carley State Park near Rochester that has them on profusion, you might want to check them out this weekend. These were photographed at Chamberlain Woods SNA.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Celebrating Green

 A couple weeks ago the pale purple of this hepatica was the center of attention on the forest floor. April showers have now turned the forest floor green. I enjoy photographing in a light drizzle to catch the water droplets on leaves.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Friday, April 15, 2016

The ground is alive!

I was studiously looking for insects on bloodroot flowers when the ground suddenly became alive with snakes sliding through the leaves. I had stumbled garter snakes emerging from a winter nest site. There is something disconcerting about getting eye to eye with your subject when there are a dozen snakes at your feet.  These docile reptiles have been given a worse reputation than big bad wolves.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Goodbye Monochrome

Color is coming! After this week the world will be green! Deer are getting hungry for some fresh greens in Flandrau State Park. We are routinely seeing 15-20 browsing on our afternoon and evening hikes.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Great Horned Neighbor

Sometimes a bird comes to you. This great horned owl spent an afternoon resting in our backyard last week. It was tempting to go outside but he definitely was paying attention when we opened the patio door. As darkness fell he edged out to the edge of the branches and was gone the next morning.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

A Morning at the Rookery

I've shared still images from the morning but I thought I would share this nature minute to give a feel for the entire experience. I hope to be back in a few weeks to watch the chicks being fed. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Home at the rookery

Home is where the heart is and these nests are definitely home for great blue herons. I had a chance to visit a rookery for the first time last week and watch these ungainly birds nest building. The amount of effort placing each stick was a marvel to watch. Non stop activity made choosing a bird to watch challenging. It was a great morning seeing something new for me.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Sunday Brunch

Sometimes in the middle of nowhere (Hayden Valley in the winter) silence is the only accompaniment to nature's cycle of life. If only I could hear what the fox was listening to, surely more interesting than reading a restaurant menu.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Hepatica and Moss

I am always trying to find a photographic purpose for moss and rarely find one. This hepatica gave me an opportunity to put some color contrast with it.