A friend challenged me to black & white photo thingy on the facebooks, so I obliged. Interestingly, this time of year (November…) it’s kind of hard to find much color in the world, so black and white landscapes work!
We have a prodigious bee balm patch over by the pond that is a favorite of all kinds of pollinators. We also have a family of ruby throated hummingbirds in residence this summer, and they were in full play-and-feed mode yesterday afternoon—zipping about above the flowers, chasing each other, feeding, and, very rarely, perching for a few brief seconds so I could get a shot off. Here are some family portraits.
Shots taken with Panasonic GX8, Lumix 100-300mm lens, ISO 1600, f/5.6, various shutter speeds.
I’ve been trying for years to get a good shot of a belted kingfisher. These common denizens of streams, lakes, and ponds are quite shy and will fly away chattering as you approach limiting the possibilities of getting a good shot. Yesterday, paddling out of South Bay on lower Lake Champlain and up into the Poultney River, this fellow was a bit more patient with me allowing me to get in range and snap off a few shots before flying off. Mission accomplished!
Bald eagles have made a dramatic recovery in Vermont over the past two decades. Here’s a discussion from the Audubon Vermont website:
“…15 Standard Survey Routes (SSR) were covered for the 2015 winter survey. A record fifty-one Bald Eagles (30 adult 20 immature, and 1 unknown age) were observed by designated observers on Vermont’s SSRs in 2015. This number is well above the record of 30 eagles reported in 2010. Bald Eagles were located on of the 14 SSRs surveyed including three routes along Lake Champlain, two along the Connecticut River, on the upper Winooski River, and on Lake Bomoseen. 2015 was the first year that an eagle was seen on the upper Winooski River route. The area between the Champlain Bridge and Shelburne Point on Lake Champlain supported the largest concentration of Bald Eagles (16 adults, 11 immatures) in the state. The overall numbers are well above totals of full surveys in recent years.”
It was a fine morning to climb the Hump today. Although there was very little snow in the woods even up at the ridge meadow, traction aids were a must as the trail is still pretty much ice covered above 2500′.
The recent heavy rains kicked up many big blocks of ice along the Huntington River. I took a walk along the banks at the Audubon Nature Center here in Huntington yesterday. This is a close-up of a broken 6″ thick slab. I like the air bubbles trapped in the ice.
The season of wacky winter weather continues. Yesterday morning’s icing event coated our backyard magnolia (and everything else) in a good layer of ice before the south winds drove the temperature up to 51 by mid afternoon.