Quiet day in the marsh

It was overcast and there wasn’t much happening in this corner of the marsh the day I captured this image. Most of the ducks were snoozing, and this mallard drake was resting in the cattails by himself. His iridescent green head really stood out among all the shades of brown in his immediate surroundings so I decided to add yet another mallard portrait to my collection.

mallard drake in the bullrushes

Gathering place

Click on image for larger view.Canada geese and mallards preening

I missed the Monochrome Madness Challenge this week but since I have this black and white image sitting on my hard drive I thought I would post it now.

This half-submerged stump in one of the outer ponds is a favorite gathering place for the Canada geese and ducks at the bird sanctuary to primp and preen.


Mallard portraits

Click on gallery images for larger views.

When I go to see the birds at the bird sanctuary there are usually lots of mallards around, but the last time I was there, there were thousands on thousands of them, and it made me realize that I really take these beautiful birds for granted when I’m there. But I do find the hens particularly appealing in spite of their plain brown jackets. Actually, they’re very pretty brown jackets, I love the detail in their feathers, but the boys certainly are much flashier. So I decided they deserve a little exclusive attention in the way of four head studies.

And just for fun, here’s another version of the first image. I have some unused and new art apps and I spent some time playing around with them during the last few days. Unlike the chickadee image earlier in the week, where the software did almost all of the heavy lifting, with this image I used a couple of apps in addition to my usual workflow, but was much more hands-on with the processing, and of course I changed the background.

Mallard drake digitally painted head study

I’m really pumped about getting back to the sanctuary while the snow geese are still there and perhaps get some captures worth posting… My largest lens, the 55-250mm, really isn’t up to the task with the distance involved, but my thinking is that the more I’m there, the better my chance of a great goose shot. We’re expecting a visit from Hurricane Ana next week, altho by then she’ll be a tropical storm, but it likely will mean lots of rain and wind, not very conducive to flight shots of the geese.  Perhaps some storm images…not that we get big waves around here (we’re in the lee of Vancouver Island). I hope the weather improves before the geese leave…


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