Saturday, May 30, 2009

Least Terns

The Least Terns prefer sandy beaches that are clear of vegetation. Here is one of the delightful terns waiting on the beach.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

It turned out that this is a female. A male returned from fishing and I watched him give her a minnow. Unfortunately, the pictures did not come out very well.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

This is most likely a male, hanging about with a minnow in his mouth. This time of year, many of the least terns can be found with minnows, advertising his abilities to be a provider.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Again, another probable male. Note that I caught him blinking. He has white eye lids.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

This is a Least Tern nest that I photographed last year. It was on the edge of the colony, below the high tide line. To be sure, I waited at a distance for the hen to fly off the nest before photographing this egg. During the following week, we had a new moon and the tide rose above this nest and the egg was lost.



This is the third Least Tern post this week from images taken Tuesday. Be sure to see my breading behavior and flight posts.



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P.S. Can't get enought Terns? Chris Petrak of Tails of Birding took a turn at posting his Terns today too! You need to see this post!

Can you believe the colors in Gloucester this morning?

We have had three days of wet weather. Gray, gray, gray. The weather finally broke this morning. I went over to East Gloucester to talk with Joey of GoodMoringGloucester and I just couldn’t believe the colors. These photos are right out of the camera without messing with the colors or saturation. These are uncropped, full framed images. Just a little sharpening, which I always need to do.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Scenic Sunday

Femail Black Swallowtail

I think I have a female Black Swallowtail here. She's seen better days, looks like she's missing some of here gear. She was feeding on red clover.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Two Gloucester Weather Vanes

I have a couple of local weather vanes for this SkyWatch Friday. The first photo comes from a post Thursday, July 31, 2008. Since then, the Trinity Congregational Church steeple has been renovated and the weather vane has received a face lift. This is what it looked like last July.


©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Here is the cod weather vane as it looks today.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

This the Town Hall weather vane with an American Crow. This is a spring shot, not a fall photo. This is the color of the leaves on this tree.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse


Visit SkyWatch Friday

Rainy, drippy day

A couple of shots from the Inner Harbor showing the wet weather.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

P.S. I had a little technical problem with the Least Tern Courtship post and it got dropped. I have posted it again.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Least Tern Courtship, one good tern deserves another.

I happened upon a pair of Least Tern courting in Ipswich. This is the first time that I’ve seen Least Tern mating. It is a wonderful sight as they do a little ritual looking to the left, freezing, then looking to the left, back and forth. After the male mounts the female, he passes the minnow to her and she horks it down. It’s all part of the ritual.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse



I was extremely luck because every shot I took was a keeper. LOL, later a pair landed about 50 feet way from me and the male gave the female a minnow and not one of the shots came out. Ah, the life of a wildlife photographer. “Um, Mr. Tern, could you do that again, a little more to the right.” Nah. It just doesn’t happen that way.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Least Terns in Fight

I’m kind of excited. The Least Terns are back. I spent the morning doing a little shooting. Here’s just a few in flight to wet your apatite. Stay tuned. I have a treat coming for you.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Gloucester Trio

Eastern Point Lighthouse, Dogbar Breakwater and a red nun channel marker.


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Sunday, May 24, 2009

Pink Lady's Slipper

The Pink Lady's Slipper (Cypripedium acaule) is the official state wildflower of New Hampshire and the official provincial wildflower of the Province of Prince Edward Island, Canada.

The plant is 6" to 12" tall and grows in the shady, moist, wooded areas. These were shot in Dogtown along the old Rockport road in Gloucester.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse


©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

Visit Today's Flowers


For those coming in on a direct link, be sure to see my Anna's Hummingbird post from earlier today.

Scenic Sunday, Lilacs and Gloucester Town Hall

This is a shot that I have wanted to take ever since I moved to Massachusetts two years ago. This is the Gloucester Town Hall. The lilacs are at there peak this week.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

I usually do one post per day, but there is so much going on now, I’ve posted three. Be sure to check out my Anna’s Hummingbird and my Pink Lady’s Slipper posts.

Visit Scenic Sunday

Anna's Hummingbird

This Anna's Hummingbird was taken back in Palm Springs last March. She was feeding her chicks and then sat on the nest. This hummingbird is about the size of your thumb.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse


©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

For those coming in on a direct link, be sure to visit my Pink Lady's Slipper post from later today.



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Friday, May 22, 2009

Forgotten Photo Friday, Three Wrens

These were all taken in the desert of Palm Springs last March. The Bewick's Wren (photos 1 and 2) and the Cactus Wren (photo 3) are old friends from California. I did post a Bewick's Wren photo earlier.

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

©2009 ShootingMyUniverse

This Cactus Wren is checking out a Verdin's nest. If you didn't see the Verdin's earlier this year, you are in for a treat.


This Rock Wren, also taken in Palm Springs, is an old friend from Colorado too. He just popped up on a rock and I got one shot off.
©2009 ShootingMyUniverse
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