Monday, June 4, 2012

Our World Tuesday - Week 41

I think of my weeks as quiet, but when I gather the week's photographs for Our World Tuesday, I am often surprised to realize how eventful the days have been.  I do realize that "eventful" is in the eye of the beholder, but flowers, birds, bees, seals and a play add up to some great pleasures, and there's more.  I've saved some "U" stories for tomorrow's ABC Wednesday post, and some skies for Skywatch Friday.  Now that I think of it, my weeks are not quiet at all.

There were a lot of flowers this week.  They seemed to catch my eye, no matter where I went.  For this post, I'm trying something a little bit different in using the flower photos as breaks between the other events.  I've labelled the flowers that I feel I know (but there could be errors) and left others blank when I'm not sure of their names.  
English Daisies
 CANADA GEESE
It was a dull day, but this goose's webbed feet churned up some interesting ripples on False Creek.
This was an outgoing goose, curious about my camera and willing to come so close, 
I could... almost count the beads of water on its feathers.
This second goose was in North Vancouver.  It was one of a flock that flew over my head.  They, too, came so close,   
my big lens could only take in one at a time.
It will never stop surprising me that they can carry those large bodies so smoothly through the air.
The geese in this picture are camouflaged by the buildings along False Creek.  


SEAGULLS and DRAGON BOATS
On Saturday, the dragon boat racers were training, and it seemed to me this seagull..
was as interested in their progress as I was.
This group was waiting to start a race.
The seagull flew just behind them as they..
overtook their competitor.  (Sorry, no photo of the overtake.)

Lavender
BEES
With so many flowers around, I guess it's not surprising that there have been a lot of bees.  I used the small lens for these shots, as they don't seem the slightest bit worried about people approaching.
I am curious to know what that yellow blob is.  It showed up in several shots.
I was surprised that this bee spent a long time on some green leaves.
Was it finding food?

Perfect Dandelion
 OSPREYS
On Saturday, Bill and I went to waterside of North Vancouver, close to the school where I used to teach.  I was hoping to check on two osprey pairs that I have followed now for three years.  There's Black Jack, a tiny speck halfway along the beach.  At the end, the ocean turns into a small creek that moves around the corner to the right.  Across from that creek is a shipyard, and there, "Jewel and Jonny" have returned each year for quite some time.  I'm told they are quite old now.  It seems to be a strange location for a nest, but they have successfully raised two chicks for at least the past three years.   
As we made out way to the corner, we enjoyed the sights and Bill waved at the tourists on this paddle boat.  He was most pleased when one person returned the gesture.
I was happy to see Jonny on a cable over the shipyard.  Because it is across the river and very high up, even with my big lens, it is difficult to get much of a photo.
We were surprised to see these shipwrights doing maintenance on this barge crane on a Saturday.
These two fellows were a long way up - at least as high as the nest. 
 We couldn't see the nest at first, and became worried that it had fallen or been taken down.
Suddenly, Jonny flew off the cable and right to the nest, where Jewel bickered in just the way I remembered.  It was fun to see and hear them, and to see that the nest is decked out for chick-rearing.  I suspect there may be chicks in the nest, but if so, they would still be too small to look over the top.
We walked back along the beach to check the other nest, inhabited three years ago by Lawrence and Olivia.  That nest had been so close, especially at low tide, that I could get some wonderful shots.  For the past two years, they had built it up, but then abandoned it.  This year, the nest had not even a hint of the sticks and mud that held it together.  We were about to leave, when I suddenly heard the familiar osprey call.  Way over the yacht club, I saw an osprey coming in with a fish.
I'm not sure if he was Lawrence, but I was excited to see him.
He flew to a faraway pylon where a female (Olivia?) was waiting.  
Again, too far away to get decent shot, but it appeared that they were starting a nest on that huge pylon.
If indeed, this is Lawrence and Olivia, they do not yet have eggs in the nest, since both left it together.  First one,  
and then the other, followed.
I will miss the old nest and the wonderful close-ups that I used to be able to get.  (These next four photos were taken last summer.)
Olivia looks up as Lawrence comes in for a landing.
Both worked hard on the nest for most of the summer, but they did not produce a chick.
Lawrence coming in with a hunk of nest material.

 MERGANSERS
There are almost always a few mergansers around the beach in North Vancouver.  We saw this one on Saturday.  She was skimming the water for food.. 
but didn't appear to be having much success.
Then she walked up onto the creek bed, where she waved her wings...
back..
and forth.
Then she turned..
and repeated the process in the other direction.

Nameless flowers with heart faces.
 FLICKER
We were in the truck and ready to leave North Vancouver when I spotted this flicker on the ground.
Bill, always so accommodating, drove the truck close to the curb, and I was able to get a..
couple of shots through the window.
Very strange (to me) how they dig into sidewalk cracks.  For grubs, I'm thinking.
I jumped out of the truck and tried to get a few shots of it when it headed into the grass.
However, it didn't stay long, and my dream of an in-flight shot didn't happen.  Still, it is always exciting to me to see those bright red markings as well as their polka dots and stripes.

TROUT LAKE BIRDS AND DUCKS
Sunday evening, we stopped by Trout Lake in Vancouver.  It is a beautiful park, and the mallards were enjoying some sun and fair weather.
Bill was first to see this little duckling...
emerge from the lily pads.
It made a bit of a production about stepping up and onto one of the lily pads.
I loved its feet and the way it framed itself with reeds.
This female Red-winged Black bird..
also framed herself just for my camera.
There were many, many Barn Swallows, but as usual, they were flitting far too quickly for decent pictures.
Nevertheless, I always become mesmerized trying to get captures.  Recently, I read some excellent writing by a blogger named Stewart who lives in Australia.  
Although I didn't leave a comment yet, it really warmed my heart to realize that somewhere in the universe is another person who also loves to watch swallows.
As we were leaving the park, I looked wa-a-ay up and saw this Bald Eagle being chased by some crows.

Blue Iris
ARTSY PERHAPS?
This was a wall and reflections along False Creek at low tide.   
I liked the blues and greens.
A fountain in Yaletown, near my apartment.  I chose a super fast shutter speed and froze the water into stalagmites.
A leaf at low tide in False Creek.

Three stages of a wild rose in North Vancouver
 RAINDROPS ON PLANTS
We have had a fair bit of rain lately, and early Saturday morning, I enjoyed the bubble raindrops gathered on leaves and needles.



Pink Clover
EMMA
On Thursday we saw a very good performance of the play, Emma.  We had met Leala Selina (Emma) a couple of months before that when she happened to be sitting next to us as we watched "Victor, Victoria" at the same theatre.  She did a fine job in her part, and the extra connection of having talked with her made the performance all the more special. 
There is a review of the play at this site, where I found the two photographs used here.

Yellow Iris
SEALS IN NORTH VANCOUVER
This spot is near Lawrence and Olivia's nest.  I have seen as many as forty seals in this area, but on Saturday, I could spot (with my big lens) perhaps four.
They tend to blend in with the driftwood..
and "artsy" derelict boat.
If you look really carefully, you may be able to make out the expression on the face of the one at the left.
In this shot, I liked the stick sculpture at the centre. 
I think four seals can be seen in this photo.

Lily

As always, thanks for stopping by.  To read about the worlds of other bloggers, check out Our World Tuesday.

18 comments:

  1. Great post and glad you caught up to the osprey. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

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  2. Your world is beautiful ,love all your amazing pics!

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  3. Fantastic post. Your world does look eventful in all the best ways. I loved seeing all the birds and flowers as well as the other shots you captured. Always such a delight to see new babies and I loved your captures of them.

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  4. such beautiful photography; I epecially love your bees and the birds

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  5. I, too, love watching the swallows. I saw a pair the other day, but I'm a little afraid that the barn owls have scared them off...
    I thought of all your lovely ocean visits today, as I accompanied 80 or so 2nd graders to Puget Sound to visit the tide pools at Seahurst Park, south of Seattle. It was an ugly, gray day, so not really any pictures to share...

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  6. Hi there - what a great set of pictures - I'd get far more than one post for this sort of material!

    Thanks for the link.

    Stewart M - Australia

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  7. I have seen a lot of gull photos but it seems as if you must have flown with the seagull to get that shot of it following the race. You captured some truly special moments with the birds, including the duckling on the lily pad and the blackbird on the rim of the leaf. About the bee: I noticed there were droplets of water on the leaf so perhaps it was enjoying a few sips of water. I also loved your artsy section and the “frozen” water. Thanks as always, Carol, for sharing your world. :)

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  8. So many wonderful photos. Appreciate the time you spent putting the post together

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  9. I like the geese best, and wish I could have a quiet week.

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  10. Wonderful shots. The flowers are beautiful and sequence of shots of birds are amazing.

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  11. Wonderful shots. The flowers are beautiful and sequence of shots of birds are amazing.

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  12. WOW. amazing collection of photos. I love all the birds, especially the osprey and the merganser. Beautiful flowers and lovely scenery. Thanks for sharing your world. Have a great day!

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  13. Greetings from Oman!!!! I was just passing by and had to stop to say that I really enjoyed your blog.Have a great day!

    Shantana

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  14. What an incredible collection of photos. Favourite were definitely the Ospreys. Wow!

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  15. Great post and glad you caught up to the osprey. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

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