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My first field trip during Winter Wings was with Paul Bannick in and around the Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge.

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I paid close attention to his every word in yesterday’s workshop, so my camera was ready and I was ready!

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About a dozen photographers had plenty of room to spread out in our school bus that took us to the first eagle sighting.

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Still early, a bit dark, we had learned how to let more light into our sensors and clicked away as the pair of eagles came and went from their nest.

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It was difficult to choose which images to share out of the many I took.

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The Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge was amazing in spite of overcast skies and threat of rain.

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We watched swans and geese take off and land, especially after an eagle ‘fly by’.

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There were literally thousands of Tundra Swans and Greater White-fronted Geese.

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Tundra Swans are another of my favorites.

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We saw a few Sandhill Cranes and lucky us, we caught them dancing!

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I didn’t count the Bald Eagles but they were plentiful … and as usual in a group, fighting over food.

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There were also thousands of Snow Geese.

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They were especially sensitive to eagle fly overs and took off at every sighting of a Bald Eagle.

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They usually landed not too distant from where they left.

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Looks like a pair of Tundra Swans having some alone time away from the group.

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I have a series from this incident…a Great Horned Owl flew across a field then landed in the grass where we could barely see him.  A Northern Harrier buzzed overhead & dove near the owl several times.  Can you see the owl?  He’s directly below the Northern Harrier in this shot, hidden by grass.

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There was a plethora of Red-tailed Hawks floating in the sky for us to capture.steider-studios-field-trip-bannick-2-17-17-18

Bald Eagles and other raptors perch on utility poles.  Generally there is only one bird per pole, so this shot with an adult and juvenile Bald Eagle was fun to see.

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To my delight we also found a Rough-legged Hawk!  I am getting to know this raptor quite well.

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Another Red-tail ~ a juvenile that hasn’t fully developed his red tail yet.

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I had to yell “stop the bus!” when I saw this coyote in a field.  I rarely can grab my camera in time at home when I see them and he was so beautiful.

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He stood there posing for a bit then ran off with a glance over his shoulder.

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Our last stop for the day was back in Klamath Falls where Black-capped Night Herons roost in trees along the Link River near the Favell Museum.

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We noticed Barrow’s Goldeneye in the river as we watched the herons…

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…and a few interesting Mallard hybrids!

Later in the afternoon I enjoyed a class learning intermediate and advanced raptor ID that I am most grateful for!  My next post will chronicle a fabulous field trip in search of raptors.

Our keynote speaker that night was Chas Glatzer.  My friend and I sat in the back, expecting to leave early because we were so tired from a full day that began at 5am.  We were literally the last to leave.  We didn’t want to miss an opportunity to talk with and thank Chas for an exceptional presentation.  I love that all three keynote speakers are ethical about capturing their wildlife shots.  Chas’s parting words still ring in my ear as it applies to wildlife photography, “Do the right thing”.

I don’t think I’ve addressed ethics in my posts, but if you haven’t thought about it I would never bait my subject or interfere with its life in any way.  I don’t whistle, rustle the brush or do anything that would turn its attention away from eating, feeding it’s young, sleeping, hunting or even just to direct it’s attention to me.  I’m truly grateful and appreciate any opportunity I have to see birds and wildlife; and love sharing what I capture with you.

Baby, its a Wild World

March 30, 2016

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After an exciting late winter and early spring, I will try to catch up with all my ‘wild’ wildlife adventures.  Can you believe how fast 2016 is flying by?!

Steider Studios.Garden Flower.3.29.16-4But first, let me tell you about yesterday.  Another exciting day on the wild side.

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I was photographing my spring garden…ahhhhh spring has finally arrived in my part of the world.  At a slightly higher elevation, 2400 feet or so Spring takes her sweet time getting here.

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I heard our resident Wild Turkeys gobbling at each other in the background, but there was something else…

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…a familiar sound that I hadn’t heard in a while.  Coyote!!  I ran toward the sound, camera in hand and saw it meandering down in the forest!

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I managed to catch one good shot of him in spite of the fact that I had the wrong lens set to take photos of flowers, not wildlife!  Oh, I have plenty of other shots, but they are too blurry to share.

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Afterwards, on my way to town for supplies I had to stop for photos of piglets on a nearby farm.

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Like all babies, they are way too cute!  Who can resist?

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Bingen Marina was my next stop and I’m thrilled to tell you our Osprey are back!  Speaking of Osprey, I’m also thrilled that a couple of my photos are included the April issue of the Ruralite, supporting a great article written by Lori Froehlich!

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Back at the Marina, a lone female Bufflehead was staying cool under the warm sun.

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A Raven landed on a branch near me.

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I’ve been waiting for this Grebe to break out in courting plumage.

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Next I stopped at a favorite place near Lyle, where this Red-tailed Hawk welcomed me.  At least I think he welcomed me!

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Found a deer resting in a semi-shady spot as I turned the corner.

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Yay, my favorite woodpecker is still in the neighborhood ~ Lewis’s Woodpecker.  Isn’t he gorgeous?

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I almost missed this!  I started to leave but noticed a bumpy looking log.  I jumped out of my car ever so quietly so I wouldn’t scare them away.  A pile of Pond Turtles!

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This little guy stopped and posed for me, but he was semi hidden behind tallish grass.

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Another Lewis’s Woodpecker ~ did I say I love these birds?  I love these birds!

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Almost to The Dalles where I needed to pick up a few items for my bath remodel (that will have to wait for another post), I stopped to watch a Great Blue Heron hunt for a while at a pond I recently found.

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Just as I realized I’d taken 4.5 hours to drive to The Dalles, I had to stop one last time for a MARMOT!!  Yes, I found a Marmot!!  I actually found it last week, but didn’t know it.  I photographed it, then immediately dismissed it as a rock until I saw it on my computer screen at home.  I remembered where it was and stopped to see if I could find it again.

Steider Studios.Wild Thing.3.29.16-12Not only did I find it, but I found TWO!  They were fun to watch as they frolicked over, under and through the caves between rocks.  Finally I had to leave them and finish my errands.  I hope to catch you up with all the critters I’ve found this past season ~ the weather has been divine, making it difficult to stay indoors!

 

 

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