Blue Jays, Whooping Cranes and more…

Since my last newsletter, the whooping crane instructional photo tour has filled and we need two or three more photographers for a second tour on Thursday and Friday, January 12-13.  If you can go, give me a call or email.

Young Whooping Crane feeding in marsh at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

Young Whooping Crane feeding in marsh at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

As you can see by the photo above, we get pretty close to these extremely rare birds during most of our tours.
Adult whooping crane landing in marsh at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

Adult whooping crane landing in marsh at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

There will be other bird and landscape photography opportunities during the whooping crane photo tours. Great blue herons, various warblers, brown pelicans, long-billed curlews, American oystercatchers, osprey and other birds are some of our more common photo subjects when we aren’t photographing whoopers.
Great blue heron at Port Aransas, Texas.

Great blue heron at Port Aransas, Texas.

Pair of whooping cranes at take off, Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

Pair of whooping cranes at take off, Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Texas.

Last week, I spent a few days in Wichita Falls with relatives.  That gave me some time to work on backyard birds like blue jays, cardinals and sparrows.  I simply had to prepare a natural looking set that included a nice stump, a vine, and some oak leaves with autumn color thrown in for good measure.  Within 10 minutes, the birds were arriving and I spent much of two afternoons shooting.
Low, heavy clouds and rain hampered my efforts a little, but the fill flash helped boost the colors and give the birds some “eye shine”.  Here are several samples of what I got.
Blue jay perched on a stump.

Blue jay perched on a stump.

I tried shooting with a blooming rose bush in the background, but the red flower was a bit much, so it was removed for most of the shooting.
Blue Jay scolding sparrows.

Blue Jay scolding sparrows.

Blue Jay eating acorn.

Blue Jay eating acorn.

Two blue jays share a feeding stump.

Two blue jays share a feeding stump.

Blue Jay landing on stump.

Blue Jay landing on stump.

Blue jay landing on a rotting stump.

Blue jay landing on a rotting stump.

Adult white-crowned sparrow landing at feeding stump.

Adult white-crowned sparrow landing at feeding stump.

When I’m hanging around home, I visit some of the area photography ranches.  As most you know, one never gets all the shots one needs, no matter how common the subject.  I continue trying to get great shot of birds like verdin, Harris’s hawk and yellow-rumped warbler.  I got these shots about three weeks ago.
Yellow-rumped warbler bathing at a ranch pond.

Yellow-rumped warbler bathing at a ranch pond.

Verdin perched in a bougainvilla bush.

Verdin perched in a bougainvilla bush.

Landing Harris's Hawk on south Texas ranch.

Landing Harris's Hawk on south Texas ranch.

So, this is what I’ve been up to.  Join me for whooping cranes or south Texas birds after the holidays (lditto@larryditto.com or 956-682-3251).
Merry Christmas,
Larry

2 thoughts on “Blue Jays, Whooping Cranes and more…”

  1. Hello Larry:

    Great photos. I always enjoy them. Question. Can I get permission to use your photos on our web site whoopingcrane.com ?

    I am the editor of Whooping Crane Conservation Association’s web site and we often need good photos to be inserted with article and to add to our photo folder. We would always give you credit.
    Chester McConnell

    1. Chester,

      You have my permission to use whooping crane photos from my newsletter for the Whooping Crane Association Newsletter as long as it is for commercial purposes.

      I’m glad you like them. Have a happy New Year.

      Larry

Comments are closed.