This year’s favorites are from across Texas and Washington’s Olympic Peninsula. We had to work a little harder than we are used to for bird photos in Washington given the clouds, rain, and tall trees, but we were amazed by the rainforests and coasts. We long to return for a longer visit, perhaps as part of a trip including northern California (Battling Elephant Seals, Yea!).
Gray Jay, Hoh Rainforest, Olympic National Park, Washington. This extremely curious bird visited us, watched us for a while, and then flew back off into the rainforest. No flash was used in this photo. The multiple catchlights are the result of broken sunlight filtering through the forest canopy.
Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk at Skillern Tract, Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.
Bugling Roseate Spoonbill, The Rookery at Smith Oaks, High Island, Texas. This spoonbill was just one of the thousands of wading birds that came to roost during spring and summer to find mates, build nests and raise chicks.
Painted Lady on Lantana, High Island, Texas. Photo taken during a break in the birding on High Island during the spring migration. Canon EOS 7D/100mm macro f/2.8L IS with high-speed synchronized ring flash.
Carolina Chickadee at Brazos Bend State Park near Elm Lake, Texas. Chickadees are charming, but lightning fast and difficult to photograph in a natural setting.
Song Sparrow Singing on a Driftwood Perch, Kalaloch Beach, Olympic National Park, Washington. We found this little charmer in the dunes with the waves of the Pacific crashing just 50 yards away.
Little Blue Heron with Red Swamp Crawfish. Pilant Lake, Brazos Bend State Park, Texas. This mucky spot is a reliable place to shoot waders hunting a variety of invertebrates.
American Lotus Bloom, Brazos Bend State Park, Texas. I look forward to visiting Brazos Bend State Park throughout the summer just to watch the American Lotus bloom.
White-Tailed-Deer Surrounded by Pixie Dust, Brazos Bend State Park, Texas. The out-of-focus flowers in the foreground lend an air of forest magic.
Pensive Yellow-crowned Night Heron, Brazos Bend State Park, Texas. It’s easy to anthropomorphize Yellow-crowned Night Herons – their eyes are so expressive.
Green Heron with Minnow, Brazos Bend State Park, Texas. Waders hunting always fascinate–what will they pluck out of the duckweed next?
Portrait of a Common Raven at Hurricane Ridge, Olympic National Park, Washington. Common Ravens can become quite tame. This one perched on a sidewalk handrail near the visitor’s center and tolerated sidewalk traffic. I suspect that it has experience with human handouts.
© 2012-2013 Christopher R. Cunningham and Elisa D. Lewis. All rights reserved. No text or images may be duplicated or distributed without permission.