Nature Notes

April 30, 2008

An early wanderer

Filed under: Birds,Long Point — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 4:38 pm

Little Blue Heron

Little Blue Heron, although rare, appears annually in Ontario. This bird was reported a couple of days ago from Long Point and has been seen in the pond by the Bird Studies Canada building in Port Rowan.

The species is white as a juvenile and blue as an adult. This bird is in between those plumages. The early morning backlit light made these images difficult but it is an interesting looking plumage, well worth a look

Little Blue HeronLittle Blue Heron


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April 25, 2008

One more reason to shoot in RAW

Filed under: Gaspe,Processing Tips — Tags: , , — Harold Stiver @ 11:15 am

Perce Rock in early morning


I occasionally go back to some older files and apply some new processing or software program to them. These images was taken at Percé Rock at Gaspé, Quebec before dawn. That was five years ago. I was never satisfied with the processed images as I was not able to represent what I remember seeing. However I recently have learned some processing techniques using HDR through the Photomatix Pro program which allowed me to bring out more of the color of the fog bank set against the pastel pink sky. However, this would not have been possible if I hadn’t shot the original in RAW format.

Perce Rock in early morning


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April 23, 2008

The object of affection

Filed under: Canada,Morphism — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 7:56 am

Female Red-winged Blackbird

Yesterday I posted about the Red-winged Blackbird male as one of the earliest arrivals among the migrants in North America. The female, shown here, generally shows up a few days later, after the males have had a chance to establish territories.

This species is an example of sexual dimorphism, where the sexes of the same species differ. In birds these difference may show up in size, plumage, and the appearance of body parts used in display. The differences in this species is striking in plumage differences,and the female lacks the bright red epaulets that the male uses in display.

Immature birds often look like females with perhaps some aspect of male plumage. See the following image of an immature Red-winged Blackbird whose hen-like plumage shows some portion of his future epaulets.

Red-winged Blackbird immature

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April 22, 2008

Spring is here

Filed under: Display,Long Point — Tags: , — Harold Stiver @ 11:13 am

Red-winged Blackbird male

It has been a very hard winter here in Ontario with snow and cold weather coming early and staying late. However now that it has finally broken, I know that I can look forward to my favorite time. The next six weeks will see the migrants coming through. One of the leaders of that wave is the Red-winged Blackbird. The males arrive first, chase each other about, sing and look for females. Hmm, sounds like Friday night at the local pub.

Hooray!!


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