Apr 30, 2011

Hunting Tri-Colored Heron, Estero Lagoon

While my partner visited a shopping outlet yesterday i happily took a trip elsewhere. :)

This visit took me to Estero Lagoon located on Fort Myers Beach in Southwest Florida.

Maybe i'm a little late in the year but there wasn't much action besides the Least Turns that dive bombed the hell out of me when i came anywhere near their nesting areas!

This Tricolored Heron was shot on a D700 and 500mm VR.

Apr 28, 2011

American Oystercatcher Posing in Last Light, Fort DeSoto

Had another try at Fort DeSoto yesterday.

Was up again at 5 am, arrived at 6:30 am and stayed at the North Lagoon until 11 am when i started to feel the effects of the sun.

After an afternoon of trying to beat the heat (thank God for the afternoon breeze!) i returned again for an evening.

This is the first time i've ever seen any Oystercatcher and to be able nab some of the images i got yesterday makes me feel really lucky. More of those to come! ;)

I was also fortunate enough to meet some great people and photographers including Chris Dobbs

http://naturephotographyblog.squarespace.com/

and Judy-Lynn Malloch
www.naturestapestryjlm.com

This Oystercatcher was shot within 20 minutes of sunset with a D700 and 500mm VR with the warm Gulf waters splashing all over my rear end!

What a day!

American Oystercatcher Posing in Last Light, Fort DeSoto

Had another try at Fort DeSoto yesterday.

Was up again at 5 am, arrived at 6:30 am and stayed at the North Lagoon until 11 am when i started to feel the effects of the sun.

After an afternoon of trying to beat the heat (thank God for the afternoon breeze!) i returned again for an evening.

This is the first time i've ever seen any Oystercatcher and to be able nab some of the images i got yesterday makes me feel really lucky. More of those to come! ;)

I was also fortunate enough to meet some great people and photographers including Chris Dobbs and Judy-Lynn Malloch.

This Oystercatcher was shot within 20 minutes of sunset with a D700 and 500mm VR with the warm Gulf waters splashing all over my rear end!

What a day!

Apr 26, 2011

First Light Cape Coral Burrowing Owl

With an early morning rise of 5 am i was sitting in front of this Burrowing Owl in Cape Coral, FL before the sun rose over the horizon.

If you look close at the owls eyes notice two things...the pupils are huge compared to images made to later in the day. The second is that the horizon line is visible in the eyes. It might be a little tough to make out here but in the full size you can clearly see this image was made in the first moments when it began to climb over the horizon. The light is ultra soft and has a wonderful warm hue.

I'm amazed just how quickly light quality diminishes here in Florida as compared to home this time of the year!

Apr 24, 2011

Ding Darling Reddish Egret

Reddish Egret by Scott Grant
Reddish Egret, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
"I swear i saw something under here!"

Taken at 'Ding' Darling Wildlife Reserve on Sanibel Island in South West Florida.

Apr 23, 2011

Calling Sandhill Crane

Calling Sandhill Crane by Scott Grant
Calling Sandhill Crane, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
There have been two Sandhill Cranes hanging out in the neighborhood i've been staying in which are incredibly tame.

They have been hard to photograph though as lining up a clean background is almost impossible with all the homes around.

Here's another example of the incredible tameness of birds in Florida. These two birds walked right up to my tripod to within 3 or 4 feet and kept on walking out the paved road!

Apr 22, 2011

Venice Rookery Immature Double Crested Cormorant Portrait

With 1275mm of effective focal length (D300, 500mm and 1.7X converter) and some good technique and patience this cormorant gave me some good opportunities to make portraits at Venice Rookery in Florida.

The cormorant has bad reputation in the looks department. But just check that eye! It's just like a jewel!

Apr 21, 2011

Venice Rookery Great Blue Heron in Habitat

Sometimes it pays to look over your shoulder. :)

Enjoying shooting with the light at my back from the far side of the Venice Rookery one evening a few nights ago i happened to look over my shoulder and something caught my eye.

There was a Great Blue Heron standing on the edge of pond lit with the last of evening light, all tucked away under a tree and in some growth.

Thankfully it was kind enough to allow me a few frames from a few different angles.

Apr 18, 2011

Great Blue Heron Overlooking Venice Rookery

Formerly the rookery was great for flight images in the morning. The foliage on the far edge made for a great background.

The far side of the Venice Rookery was pretty well cut to the ground last June. On my first visit there this year i was stunned at the difference.

I'm starting to realize that there seems to be more potential there for photos with the 'trimming' of the invasive species.

This was taken in very last light on the far edge of the rookery which is now fantastic to photograph from in the evening.

This Great Blue Heron was taken with the D700, 500mm VR and 1.7X converter at ISO 3200, f6.7 at 1/40th of a second.

Apr 17, 2011

Great Egret Flight Into First Light

Image taken close to home base in Nokomis, Florida in early morning light.

I did add some canvas to image left for compositional purposes as the egret was closer to the left edge of the frame.

Apr 16, 2011

Incoming Roseate Spoonbill, Ding Darling Wildlife Preserve

Incoming Roseate Spoonbill by Scott Grant
Incoming Roseate Spoonbill, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
As mentioned previously the morning was a bust for us at 'Ding' Darling National Wildlife Refuge.

That evening things really came together for us with great shows by several species of birds.

One of the species was Roseate Spoonbill. :)

Black Crowned Night Heron Juvenile, Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge

We finally got down to 'Ding' Darling National Wildlife Refuge yesterday. on Sanibel Island.

Up at 5 AM, the sun was just peaking up over the horizon when we arrived after our 90 mile drive to the refuge.

The morning was literally a bust with little to nothing happening that i wanted to shoot. Two quick runs through the 'wildlife drive' and we left for some breakfast and a nap on the beach.

That evening was a different story altogether! All i can say is thank goodness i bought more memory cards a few months backs a i shot about 36 GB's worth of images.

This is one from the beginning of the evening with much much more to come!

Apr 15, 2011

Great Egret Portrait

Great Egret Portrait by Scott Grant
Great Egret Portrait, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
My better half was out sunbathing in the back garden here in Florida this afternoon today when she comes in telling me to go have a look at who drove her out of her chair.

I walk over to the back door, look out and see a Great Egret (2 to 2.5 feet tall) staring back at me like he's looking for something.

Well, how about a lunch?

To keep it around for a minute or three i played some great egret calls from my iphone and ran to get some camera gear.

It did stick around for five minutes while i got ready but it was standing in full mid day sun. Not good for good photos.

With a little incentive in the form of sausage morsels from an evening or two ago i got him in the shade of a tree with a shady background...perfect for portraits.

I had to keep throwing the sausage pieces back behind him as it was he was too close to focus the 500mm most of the time.

What a terrible problem to have. I just love this place!

Apr 12, 2011

Preening Cattle Egret

Preening Cattle Egret by Scott Grant
Preening Cattle Egret, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
I'm starting to love this little rookery more and more every day. It's literally 100 feet out the back door and is really start to come to life in the last week or so with different species and numbers of birds.

This was taken with the D300, 500mm VR and 1.7X converter in the early AM.

Apr 11, 2011

Black Crowned Night Heron Eclipse

By positioning the Night Heron between the sun and my position a nice silhouette is formed.

Not too often i shoot with these settings:
ISO 200, f22, 1/8000th!

Apr 8, 2011

Black Skimmer in Last Light, Nokomis Beach, Florida

Made a mad dash for last light tonight and was rewarded with a couple of Black Skimmers, a species i've never seen before and a couple minutes of great light. :)

Apr 6, 2011

Hunting Green Heron, Venice Rookery, Florida

i got to stop by the Venice Rookery today. I was quitedissappinted to see how much of the foliage around the rookery was cut last June. I pretty well didn't even bother to try for any flight images as i'm not too keen on buildings in my backgrounds. :(

Thankfully this little Green Heron was reasonably cooperative for a few of us and hung out on some good perches away from the reeds for some time.

Apr 5, 2011

Fluffy Little Blue Heron

Fluffy Little Blue Heron by Scott Grant
Fluffy Little Blue Heron, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
Taken on an overcast day with the tripod mounted D300, 1.7X teleconverter and 500mm VR in Nokomis, Florida.

Backyard Whistling Duck

Backyard Whistling Duck by Scott Grant
Backyard Whistling Duck, a photo by Scott Grant on Flickr.
One of the first wildlife images from our visit to the south this April.

I made this image with a tripod mounted 500mm VR, 1.4X converter and a D700.