Mix of Wetlands: Ducks, Otter, Hawk, BIFs (4/16/2021)

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zackiedawg Forum Pro • Posts: 33,935
Mix of Wetlands: Ducks, Otter, Hawk, BIFs (4/16/2021)

To keep things rolling along, the following shots pick up where the last post left off - January 9th at the western wetlands in Wellington, FL, seeing some of the winter birds and critters that don't come as often as far south and east as my usual grounds...then transitioning over to my local wetlands again.

As usual, all shots were taken with the A6600, and in this case, all with the FE 200-600mm G OSS lens.  All shots are posted at 1800 pixels on the longest side if you view them in original size:

The western wetlands aren't usually go-to spots for small perching birds, but I did happen to spot this black-and-white warbler popping around in one of the trees

The long-billed dowitchers were hanging around near the shore, feeding and ignoring me

Not as good an encounter as last summer, but I did run into another river otter - this one was rolling around in some dry leaves on shore, when it froze hearing me approach - as you can see I was still behind some dense foliage and shooting through the leaves, so it hadn't yet spotted me.  Just after, it scurried into the water

I didn't catch this mottled duck in flight as it came from behind me, but I turned to shoot just as it was coming down to land in the water

I had some shots of the lovely American wigeons in my last post - they are a duck I don't get to see too often unless I go out west, so I tend to take a lot of shots of them when I do!

This male was kind enough to get up and stretch its wings for me

Another wintering species I rarely ever see - unless I go west - the hooded mergansers.  Strangely, all seemed to be females and juveniles like this group - never did spot a full-colored male!

I still enjoy seeing them - and especially when they raise their little 'sail' at the back of their head...aka the 'hood' of their name...like the one on the right is doing a bit

Heading back to my local wetlands...the immediate thing that strikes you is just how much closer I can get to the birds.  Like this double-crested cormorant who sat 5 feet from me, with his head craned out over the water - showing that gorgeous eye

The always lovely and cuddly looking pied-billed grebe, with its reflection in the green waters

Sometimes hawks fly silently and can sneak up on prey - other times, they scream their heads off so you can't help but look up - this one was calling out loudly and constantly as it circled over me...was I the problem?

Or maybe it just wanted to be photographed against the lovely blue sky...I obliged!

My last post had some tricolored heron fishing action - they were all over the local wetlands that day - this one was flying over to a new spot - the boardwalk he had just flown under is reflected in the water, along with the heron

The tricolored heron's flight took it right towards me, and I liked the water background, just for something different - so I snapped a few shots of the sequence

The final destination of the tricolored heron ended up being a patch of reeds right where I was standing - so the last frame in the flight sequence was considerably closer and a very different background!

Comments, questions, and critique welcomed as always and ever!

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