I took this picture two weeks ago at the Sarasota Jungle Gardens. I can’t believe I have lived here for 18 years and yet this was my first visit. While the fascinating Pink Flamingos are certainly the star attraction in my book, I found there were plenty of other photo ops such as these Florida Cooters all lined up in a row. I wish the image was a little sharper but I like this photo because some of their heads appear to be facing the camera.
I took this photo last week at the Venice Rookery. This was my first trip to the Rookery, a place I have been wanting to visit ever since I saw all the other bloggers beautiful pictures. We had other things on our agenda that day so my goal was just to find it so that when I went out on a shoot I would be familiar with were it was. I did not have my tripod or DSL camera, just a Canon point and shoot. This picture of the Great Blue Heron was my best of the 10 minutes I got to spend there. I really wanted good photos of the Black-crowned Night Herons as I never get to see them in my neighborhood. I did get to see them and took many photos but the birds were too deep in the trees and the photos were too dark or shadowy. This wraps up January with N is for nest and kicks off February with F is for feathers.
Yesterday, we made a trip to Venice. We visited the Rookery (next week’s post) and then the Crow’s Nest for lunch. I tried their famous fish sandwich, it was delicious. Anyways, after lunch we took a walk around the marina where I decided to take pictures of the sailboats that were cruising all around. Although I think this picture captures the delightful January afternoon we got to enjoy in Southwest FL, I think I missed the “boat.” Bad pun intended. Had I zoomed in on the Pelican at the bottom of this photo, I think I would have had a great “dive bomb” photo.
This morning, I paid a visit to the Sarasota Jungle Gardens. It was a beautiful, cool morning for walking around with the camera at this popular Sarasota attraction. This Florida water turtle, who I believe to be a Florida Cooter, made a macro shot easy for me as he sat just a few feet from my camera as I was walking by the turtle exhibit. I just had my Canon “point and shoot” with me so I set it to Macro & Mono and snapped away.
This is a follow-up post to last week’s picture of the Double-crested Cormorant swimming in a pond. This is what a first year Double-crested Cormorant looks like. Note the pale coloring on the neck and breast area verses the dark, blackish all over color of an adult. Same pretty blue eyes. Photo was taken at the same pond as last week’s picture.
When I first started photographing birds in my neighborhood, I usually didn’t get excited to see a Double-crested Cormorant. Usually, I could only shoot them from the neck up as they swam around the pond and didn’t think it was worth the effort. It took me a while to realize that they have beautiful blue, almost transparent eyes. Now when I spot them, I always take a shot and can’t wait to look at the eyes. I even entered one in a contest and named it “behind blue eyes.” This picture was taken last week at a pond on Player’s Drive in Lakewood Ranch.
I’ve always been someone that needs “alone time”, even on the holidays. On Christmas morning, after I went on a long walk with my husband and dogs, I went back out again with my camera. Well, Christmas certainly came for this amateur photographer! I only had to go around the block to find the Rosette Spoonbill and the Wood Stork sitting together for me. I have sharper photos of both but this is the best I have of both together. This was not my only present. At the same pond, I got pictures of a baby alligator, Great White Egret and two Great Cormorants sitting side by side making all kinds of interesting motions. Happy New Year one and all!
Last night, my husband and I went to Enchant St. Pete at Tropicana Field. This holiday event is also taking place in Washington and Seattle. We had a good time and were full of the holiday spirit. We even hit the skating rink which you see in the photo. I thought I would get amazing shots even though I only had my iPhone with me. I was a little disappointed that it was so hard to frame the shots without getting the seats, signs, ceiling etc. that screamed “we are at an indoor ballpark, not in a winter wonderland.” This event is 5 minutes from where I work so for us, it was worth checking out. I am not sure I would recommend driving across the state as I am sure there are better light displays to be found and it did not quite live up to the hype in my book.
Doodle #1 and Doodle #2 – They sure make me smile – Hope you do too.
A couple of weeks ago, I attended the Tampa Bay Library Consortium’s 40th annual meeting at Lowery Park zoo. We had plenty of time built in the program to visit the animals. My favorites of the day were the Bornean Orangutans. I could have watched them for hours! I wish I would have got a better shot of the mother, she is a little cut off at the bottom in this picture. I decided to use the vignette tool to try and make it less noticeable.