Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Osprey update and Jericho walk

With pretty much steady rain all day yesterday, and with the weather site that I checked predicting more of the same for the rest of the week, I thought that I might not see the osprey family for quite some time.  However, the predictions were wrong, and today turned out to be beautiful.  Top that with Bill's offer to drive us to North Vancouver, and things couldn't get much better.  The one small glitch is that somehow, after a morning walk at Jericho, I must have inadvertently changed the setting on my camera to "snapshot" instead of "large" and, so far, I haven't been able to find instructions for changing it back again.  That makes for less detail in the osprey photos, but there is still enough to see that the family appears to be doing well.

I worked very hard for this first photo.  It was low tide, but one of those days when low tide and high tide are not all that different. I wanted to get closer to the nest for at least a couple of the shots, so waded in, fully clothed, until I was almost waste deep.  Not so comfortable, and I was definitely a bit nervous for my camera, but the reward was this proof that Junior is getting stronger every day.  The preflight stage of flapping and exercising the wings is a very good indicator that things are going along as they should.  (Mama is mostly hidden behind Junior.)
There is Bill, watching me in the water, and wondering if my camera will make it back to dry land safely.  He is with a lady named Donna, who also had come to photograph the osprey.  At one point, there were four of us with long lenses, all lined up, taking pictures, and Grandpa Wayne, filling us in on details from his observations earlier in the morning.  It is great to meet people with like interests, and it was especially fun to have Bill there, part of the osprey fan club.  
This crow was watching us watch the osprey.
Papa comes in with a fish.  This was the last shot I got from the water before wading slowly and cautiously back to the land lookout point.
Nice family portrait.  Ma on the left, Pa in the middle, and Junior on the right.
This one shows how big Junior is getting.  He's almost up to Mama now.
We were all cheering every time Junior exercised his wings.  In the last couple of shots, it really appears as though Mama is giving him a little push.
The rest of this post describes a walk I took with Black Jack this morning at Jericho.  It seemed as though the animals and birds were all celebrating the after-rain freshness.  This isn't the very best mallard picture, but I love the blue/green water. 
This is the little bridge over the pond.
This turtle seems to have a favorite spot at the right corner by the bridge.  I see it almost every time I go.
I am wondering if this might be a young Spotted Towhee.  I was surprised to see its red eye.
Birds were singing loudly all through the park.  I think this is a house finch.
I don't know what this little one is, but it was very cute, as it tried to scratch under its wing.
Black Jack had a great play with this dog, Lucky.  They look so fierce, but were  having an absolutely wonderful time.  It was impossible to get any kind of focus, but I'm still happy with the picture.
This heron was fishing in the same spot for at least an hour.
I took this last shot as we were heading home. 
That was our day, another good one.  


  1. Looks like a lovely, holiday outing(s). Junior is looking so grown up! But I had to look twice at the one of the bird scratching under its wing--for a sec it looked like some sort of weird squirrel, with its paw raised! Looks like Lucky was a good match for Black Jack.

  2. Another series where it's almost impossible to pick my favourite! Loved the last three especially.

  3. Funny how that little man in your camera changed the picture quality setting to "snapshot". He deserves a good spanking.

    Despite that, the shots for this post are still excellent. My favorite is the heron. The colours, reflections and framing seemed especially pleasing to my eye.

  4. I'm with Carole on this -- the last three are great. The last one the greatest IMHO. I'm still loving this new camera of yours!

  5. Thanks, EvenSong, I'm thinking Junior will fledge quite soon. I hope the thunderstorms forecast for today won't be too severe.

    Glad you liked those shots, Carole and dp. I'd say the camera is a keeper, but.. must read the manual. i repeat, must....... Or at least, must find a D90 book for Dummies. Yes, that's it!

    Thanks, Bill. Always appreciate your perspective. The really strange thing is that the little man seems to have changed it back again to "large" version when I wasn't looking.