The Desert Broom is in fine form at the Gilbert Water Ranch right now, and I can’t recall it ever looking better in previous years. This might be because we haven’t had any winter rain to knock it down. On a recent visit (Nov 29) I took a walk down one of the trails I usually don’t bother with and I’m glad I did. The shrubs on both sides of the path were taller than I am and covered with the white fluff of the Desert Broom. I’ve taken photos of many species feeding in the white stuff before, but this time I wanted to concentrate on the plant for a change. I was only packing my normal bird rig so this was shot with my D300, my AF-S 300/2.8 lens and the Nikon TC20E III 2x converter, all on top of my Gitzo tripod. I wanted the image to represent the extent of the white while still showing some detail so I let the white flow out of all sides of the frame while I used the green stems and tan heads as focal points for the viewer.
To put the Desert Broom in context here’s a shot of a White-crowned Sparrow on a branch in front of a wall of fluff. This is from my most recent visit to the Gilbert Water Ranch on December 6 just after 9:00 am.
Nikon D300, AF-S 300/2.8 plus TC20E III (2x), Gitzo tripod, ISO 400, 1/250th second at f/8.