I am just barely back from Colombia, so this will be a short post focused on One Bird, the Andean Condor, the sight of which perhaps trumped them all. (This bird does not respond to a recording. It appears at will.) And just our luck, when we were up in the Páramo at Los Nevados National Park, approximately 13,000-14,000 feet? – we saw this magnificent raptor very well.
The color leaves much to be desired, but this is not a particularly colorful bird so I am just happy to have captured the spirit of its flight. Click on the pictures if you want a closer look.
Some vegetation at Los Nevados
I have nine days of memories, of wonderful birds, great companions and the friendly Colombian people. For the moment, I leave you with a picture of a couple on their motorcycle with their dogs in tow. Check out those nifty helmets!
To be continued! Thanks to all for your interest and support. 🙂
This week, going through the Belize photographs (almost done!), I found this series of Black-Crowned Night Heron pictures, and decided the bird deserves its own post, which almost reminds me of a fashion layout. I set the first photo as my desktop background at work so I can be greeted by a little cheer as I sign in every morning (work and the weather being what they are lately).
I have seen Black-Crowned Night Herons before but never like this one. If there was a momentary realization that the heron was hanging out in some astounding scenery, I think my autopilot kicked in and just kept shooting as many pictures as I could. These pictures were taken the day we went on a boat ride around the lagoon that surrounds Crooked Tree and its environs.
Above was the first sighting of the heron. Although the photographs were in sequence I cannot remember now, three weeks later, if this was the exact same individual. Although I think it’s likely that as the boat moved, it flushed the heron and the bird flew ahead of us to land eventually in the flowering shrubs.
So at a greater distance the heron was in a less colorful habitat which made for less attractive pictures.
There were pictures of other birds between these two settings, but I don’t think the boat had moved all that far. I’d like to think after the heron saw us with cameras it decided to go for the best background for its photo shoot.
If anyone knows this shrub, please tell me what it is. I bought a beautiful little book on the Trees of Belize by Kate Harris at the Audubon Society in Crooked Tree, but so far have not been able to locate this plant by pictures of its flowers and leaves. (Birds this life; in my next life, plants.)
I won’t tell you how many pictures I took of the heron at this particular spot but I think the bird almost looks quite pleased with itself. Close scrutiny being what it is, though, eventually it was time to move on. The heron took the first cue.
It’s going to be a busy weekend, but I will try to accomplish my post about the focus of the trip, which hopefully will coincide with our fearless leader’s report as well.
I am back from an incredible safari in Kenya and Tanzania. It would be more accurate to say I am only partially back, as jet lag persists. I should not be surprised: it took four days to get used to being nine hours ahead. Only now I am nine hours behind.
Cokes Hartebeest, Nairobi National Park, Kenya
In any event, I wanted to begin sharing a few images from the last few weeks. It will take me some time to go through all the pictures, but I will be posting more as soon as I am able.
Secretary Bird, Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania
As it turns out my laptop died shortly after I arrived in Nairobi so I started editing on the camera to save room on the flash memory cards. I think I only accidentally deleted one better photograph of a less-than-flashy bird…
Zebras and Wildebeest, Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania
Not wanting to take any chances, today I downloaded all the pictures to my desktop, which machine has also been unreliable. I then copied everything onto an external hard drive.
Lions, Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania
I look forward to a new laptop, namely one that is not confused by software updates. I am contemplating switching to a MacBook Pro. One adventure after another.
Wildebeest Migration, Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania
Please click on the pictures for larger images.
Yellow-Collared Lovebird, Tarangire National Park, Tanzania
With luck I will have a sizable collection on my flickr page by Christmas… Except I get redirected away from the flickr page login from every other machine except the dead laptop. What to do, what to do…