Bosque del Apache, Migrants & Hummingbirds

It looks like photographers are ready to head into the wilds again.  The Whooping Crane and the Big Bend Photo tours are full now, although we could handle one or two more at Big Bend.  The Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge trip has room for one or two more.  If you read this and remember you have indicated an interest in that trip, let me know right away.  Some photographers have said they intend to go, but they didn’t sign up.  The time is close enough that I need to get a solid count of everyone who intends to go.

Although we have seen few signs of bird migration here in McAllen, I have been lucky enough to capture a few hummingbird images.    Last Monday was a good day at South Padre Island (SPI) where Steve Sinclair and I caught the tail end of a good migration weekend.  Here are some images from the hummer and SPI shoots.

Click on a photo in the upper right zone and it will enlarge and sharpen for you.  From there, you can advance through the photos.

Buff-bellied Hummingbird working Turk's cap flowers at Edinburg World Birding Center.


I was focused on the Turk’s cap (above) when a buff-bellied hummingbird flew between me and the flower and I tripped the shutter.  The result was this silhouette of a bird in the shadows between me and the Turk’s cap.

Buff-bellied Hummingbird working the flowers at Edinburg World Birding Center.


Female roseate skimmers resting on yucca blades.

Ruby-throated hummingbird male feeding.


The shot above is a male ruby-throated hummingbird with durante bush bloom super-imposed with it.  The hummers feed at this plant, so I decided to see how well this technique works.  One needs to be more careful than I was in blending subjects.  The size ratios, focus and lighting need to be compatible.

Epidonax flycatcher at South Padre Island on October 1. This may be a yellow-bellied flycatcher.


Female American redstart foraging in the tepeguaje trees at South Padre Island.


Lots of Wilson's warblers were in coastal habitats last week.


Ruby-throated Hummingbird stretching in a South Padre Island tree.


White ibis and mottled ducks going to roost at the World Birding Center marsh on South Padre Island.


Roseate spoonbill feeding with the blurred edge of a golden rod bloom in the foreground.


Black-necked stilts feeding at sunset on South Padre Island.


American bittern in the South Padre Island marsh at sunset.


The American bittern (above) was working through the marsh at South Padre Island last Monday afternoon.  For me, this was the best sighting of the day.


Brown pelicans heading onto the Laguna Madre to roost.


The last photo of the day at South Padre Island was shot through cattails as a group of brown pelicans headed into the sunset to roost on the Laguna Madre.

Let me know if you want to shoot cranes, geese, ducks, hawks and more at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge on December 2-4.