Carrizo Plain National Monument

January 9, 2016 at 5:07 pm (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, National Parks, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) (, , )

Carrizo Plain National Monument

Carrizo Plain National Monument

The nice thing about being in Oklahoma in winter is that the cold, dreary days make it easy to stay inside and catch up on my photo editing. Although I miss California, I needed some down time and a chance to stop spending several hundred dollars a month in gas traveling to beautiful places year-round. Editing is a way of revisiting these places, such as the Carrizo Plain National Monument.

State Rt. 58

State Rt. 58

April 2015 was past-peak flower season in many areas of California, but enroute to the coast the hills were still kelly green in central California. Read the rest of this entry »

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Taylor Creek, South Lake Tahoe

November 7, 2015 at 9:35 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) (, )

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On my recent California road trip, I visited Taylor Creek in South Lake Tahoe specifically to see the kokanee salmon run and the black bears that come to feed on the spawning fish.

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Although the number of salmon was very low, I was very happy to be able to see them in the clear, shallow creek.  Unfortunately, the black bears didn’t make an appearance.  However, I did enjoy the tapestry of fall colors.

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The bare alders with their wispy branches remind me of needle art landscapes I’ve seen, silvery threads amid the knots and embroidered leaves.

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The trail to Lake Tahoe was an easy walk.

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The paddlewheel tourist boat is rippled and warped by the heat waves.

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Common merganser

Common merganser

Common mergansers in the creek hoped for an easy meal of salmon.

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The serrated bill makes good grabbers.  I watched one of these ducks in a high speed underwater chase after the spawning salmon.  It came up without its meal.  Oh well.  Better luck next time.

Kokanee salmon spawning pair

Kokanee salmon spawning pair

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Website:  CindyMcIntyre.com

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Long-eared Owl Family

November 5, 2015 at 7:16 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) (, )

Long-eared owls

Long-eared owls

I was in Ridgecrest, California yesterday and returned to the cemetery where our birding group had seen a family of long-eared owls.  I walked for a half hour peering in every tree (they’re extremely well camouflaged as you can see) when I found them almost right next to the car!

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This pair was very alert, but the other two owls resented being awoken from their naps.

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Anyway, here are their portraits.

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Website:  CindyMcIntyre.com

Online gallery:  Smugmug and Fine Art America

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October Birds – California Coast

October 28, 2015 at 6:24 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, National Wildlife Refuges (US Fish & Wildlife), Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) ()

Black oystercatcher

Black oystercatcher

It’s that thick red outline around the yellow eye that makes the black oystercatcher look like a bird drawn by a child. The fat pink legs and thick red bill add to the comedic look of this shorebird that posed nicely for me just outside the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Acorn woodpecker

Acorn woodpecker

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Harriers at Kern NWR

August 4, 2015 at 7:13 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, National Wildlife Refuges (US Fish & Wildlife), Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) (, , )

Male Harrier in a dive

Male Harrier in a dive

At the end of January I visited the Kern National Wildlife Refuge near Bakersfield, California.  I saw a male northern harrier doing many swoops and dives, and I assumed he was displaying for a female who may have been perched on a tree.

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Sometimes he would break away as if hunting for a rodent, flying low over the grassy fields as harriers do. Read the rest of this entry »

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Eastern Sierra Birds – part 2

July 11, 2015 at 4:01 pm (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) ()

Black-throated sparrow

Black-throated sparrow

Toward the end of our birding trip we learned that our leader Bob Barnes had been instrumental in saving a lot of land in the Kern River area as designated wilderness.  Here we are below standing next to the boundary sign; Bob is to the immediate left of the sign. Read the rest of this entry »

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Birding Trip in California’s Eastern Sierras

July 11, 2015 at 9:16 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildlife) (, )

Birders in the cathedral of evergreens in the Eastern Sierras

Birders in the cathedral of evergreens in the Eastern Sierras

I generally like birding and hiking alone, since I am distracted by every flower, bug, lizard, and bird. That irritates anyone who has an agenda of actually hiking at a reasonable pace.  But occasionally I like to “bird” with others who are good at spotting and identifying them, and it’s great to be with like-minded folk.  So I signed up for a 4-day trip to California’s Eastern Sierras through Sea and Sage Audubon, led by Bob Barnes and John Schmitt.

Long-eared owl showing off its long ears

Long-eared owl showing off its long “ears”

I saw many “life” birds, including a family of long-eared owls at a Ridgecrest cemetery, and just enjoyed doing my part to find and ID birds – some of which were lifers for others, too. Read the rest of this entry »

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Singing Birds of Joshua Tree – Video

May 24, 2015 at 11:26 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, National Parks, Nature, Nature photography, Video)

 

 

 

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Images taken with Canon SX-50

Website:  CindyMcIntyre.com

Online gallery:  Smugmug and Fine Art America

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Birds of Joshua Tree

May 19, 2015 at 5:00 am (Bird photography, Birds - California, California, Mojave Desert, National Parks, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Southwest Birds, Wildlife)

Canyon wren fledgling looking grouchy

Canyon wren fledgling looking grouchy

The young canyon wrens made a non-stop racket at the 49 Palms Oasis in Joshua Tree National Park.  The loud peeps helped their parents keep track of them when they were ready to fill those noisy mouths with caterpillars.

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The fledglings could fly well enough to pester a parent hunting for their meals.  Soon, though, these babies will learn to find their own food, and the palm grove will return to peace and quiet. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Few Good Birds of Mojave National Preserve

April 20, 2015 at 12:01 pm (Bird photography, Birds - California, National Parks, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Southwest Birds, Wildlife) ()

Zone-tailed hawk

Zone-tailed hawk

Going birding with an expert familiar with which bird will be found where is usually an excellent way to “meet” new species, and the zone-tailed hawk was the highlight for me on a trip last week to Mojave National Preserve, California. Read the rest of this entry »

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