Synchronized wading — Dowitchers (2 images)

The next few days have turned out to be busy ones so I may have to rely on images I captured before my trip. Today I’ve selected a couple of images from the bird sanctuary near where I live in British Columbia. I’m always delighted when I’m visiting the sanctuary at low tide to find that the Dowitchers are in town. I love watching them foraging in the shallows, with their heads bobbing up and down like sewing machines.

Click on images for larger view. Dowitchers in zigzag formationFour dowitchers wading in v-formation



Dining at the lake — 8 images

On another quick trip into Geneva yesterday we spent a half hour or so on Île Rousseau again. Once again I was reminded why I try never to go anywhere without a camera with me. The usually elusive Great Crested Grebe was hanging around the island and it wasn’t until I had my 55-250mm lined up on her that I realized she had a baby with her, an adorable little striped job.  Suddenly not one but 2 heads popped out from under Mama Grebe’s wings. Then Papa Grebe showed up after a little while carrying a small fish.

Click on images for larger view. Grebe chicks riding on parent's backRiding on Mama Grebe’s back.

Grebe bringing fish for chicksHere comes Papa Grebe with lunch!imageGrebe chick taking fish from parentOne chick jumps into the water and takes the fish.

Grebe chick with fish crosswise in beakGrebe chick sliding fish into throatThe chick struggles with the fish but finally gets it lined up head first so it goes down easily and…

Grebe chick after swallowing fishLook Papa! I ate it ALL!

imageAfter the one chick has swallowed the fish, Papa Grebe leaves to find more fish. The second chick, still ensconced under Mama’s wing, raises a ruckus — Hey!! What about me??

It was time to leave at this point so we couldn’t wait around to see if the second chick would get a share…


Yvoire, France


This gallery contains 14 photos.

Yvoire is a small, walled medieval town situated on the south shore of Lake Geneva, in France. It ranks among the most beautiful villages in France and dates back to the early 14th century. Inside the village walls, the streets are … Continue reading

Ant-bombing fly — 5 images

This isn’t the post I’d planned for today. But this morning on my way home from my walk I witnessed an odd scene that I was I able to partially capture with my camera. I was watching an ant with some tiny black winged insects which appeared to be young aphids. Ants will sometimes defend aphids as they like to eat the sweet liquid that aphids secrete. While I was focusing on the ant, suddenly a fly came swooping in and dive bombed it. On its second attack, there seemed to be a bit of a scuffle, so quick that I didn’t really see what was going on. I had the impression that the fly somehow grasped the ant, but a split second later the fly was sitting on the plant, and the ant was on a different section of the plant, far enough away from its original position that it couldn’t possibly have repositioned itself that quickly.The aphids were still in their original position. The fly must have picked up the ant and then released it again.  The fly seemed to deliberate, I thought it was going to pounce on the ant again, then it flew off, only to return almost immediately and proceeded to dive bomb the ant again a few times before once again settling on the plant. A short while later the fly flew off and didn’t return. I couldn’t find any references to regular flies attacking what looked like an average type of ant — can anyone enlighten me as to what was going on there…?

Click on gallery to view images.



Quiet spot for a nap

We’re having wifi problems tonight –at best excruciatingly slow, at worst no service at all, so once again this will need to be a one image post.

This mallard drake clearly thought he wouldn’t be noticed if he took a nap in the reeds at the side of the pond.

Click on image for larger view.  Mallard drake sleeping in the reeds


Two’s company — 3 images

OK, back to regular programming tonight: images that I captured in the past week. I gave all of them an artistic treatment, added some textures, but the compositions are as found and as shot.

Click on images for larger view. Two red beetles on dandelion developing seedheadI have absolutely no idea what these little red bugs are. They resemble firebugs but the markings are different. They are sitting on a developing dandelion seedhead.

Grasshopper nymph and fly on foxglove blossomA fly with what I believe is a grasshopper nymph on a foxglove.

Snail and grasshopper share a stemWhile I was setting up to shoot the snail, this grasshopper shimmied up the stem as tho it wanted to be included in the image. How could I resist!?