Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

August 21, 2011

Not what I was looking for

Filed under: Birds, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch, Non Birds — richditch @ 5:33 pm


8/19/2011, 7:26 am, Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 300/2.8 plus TC20E (2x), ISO 400, 1/160th second at f/5.6, G1325 tripod, RRS BH-55, sidekick

I got out again on Friday just after dawn, primarily chasing a report of a potential rare bird for AZ at the Gilbert Water Ranch. We’re still running in the triple digits and likely will be for another month or so, but a report of a species I haven’t seen since leaving NJ is worth a couple hours of discomfort.

I stayed for almost three hours, encouraged when a friend arrived looking for the same rarity. We didn’t see it, but my friend did find a similar bird that was probably the source of the report.

Since I was hoping for something specific I stayed in one place mostly. The variety and numbers of birds were up since my visit a week before and even without a lot of hiking around I managed 36 species.

At one point I made a quick check at another dry pond trying to find the small flock of shorebirds that struck me as phalaropes when they buzzed my initial location. There was no water so the phalaropes must have gone somewhere else. But there was this very healthy looking coyote at the far edge of the dry pond basin, and we eyed each other for a couple minutes before the coyote moved off. Although the Water Ranch is located in a very suburban location I see coyotes there a few times each year. I just wish I could get some shots from a little less distance – this is cropped to 51% of the frame.

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow

I did find a couple of birds to photograph while I was there, but nothing spectacular. This Song Sparrow popped up nearby, looking like it was in the process of molting its feathers.

8/19/2011, 7:03 am, Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 300/2.8 plus TC20E (2x), ISO 400, 1/160th second at f/5.6, G1325 tripod, RRS BH-55, sidekick.


1 Comment »

  1. You got a great look from that Coyote Rich and I like it against the dark green background. Coyotes are relatively common on Antelope Island and we constantly strive for nice shots of them but we find them to be very elusive subjects. I can imagine how hot it is down there as it’s supposed to approach 100 here by the middle of the week. We’re hoping to escape into the mtns for a few days beginning Tuesday.

    Comment by rondudley — August 21, 2011 @ 5:58 pm

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