In early October, Nick Benavides invited me over to his Los Lazos Ranch near Laredo to photograph some of the big bucks he was seeing. With only two afternoons and a morning to spare for the trip, I was happy to see the big guys were ready to come in close for each photo session.
Two weeks later, four photographers traveled with me over to Cotulla, Texas where I conducted a three day Instructional Photo Tour the Santa Margarita Ranch (www.santamargaritaranch.com) . One of the great things about these south Texas ranches is the tremendous wildlife diversity. So, when we were ready to take a break from big deer, there were birds, reptiles and other critters to photograph at the photo blinds and along the ranch roads. The hospitality, food and accommodations were exceptional and the ranch managers were always available to insure that we had a quality visit.
Here are some of the images from these ranches. Just click on a photo to make it larger and sharper for good viewing.
The big bucks at Los Lazos Ranch didn’t have swollen necks in early October, but their antlers were impressive.
Lark sparrows and a variety of other birds perched near the deer blind as I waited for the big bucks to appear at Los Lazos Ranch.
This Santa Margarita Ranch monster was carrying so much headgear that he had to hold his head back to maintain a balance.
This mature black-buck antelope showed up at the photo blind on several occasions.
At a second photo blind we were greeted by many scaled quail and other critters like the colorful crayfish.
A huge whitetail buck gave me this parting shot as he crossed a fallen fence at sundown.
Don’t forget to check out all the south Texas Photo Ranches for a great time and some fantastic photography.
This newsletter will be short since it contains only a few bird photos from among the many that accumulated in my files since last winter. I just dumped 21,000 files from the recycle bin, so now you know there can’t be many keepers left to pick from. Nevertheless, these were a joy to capture.
Click on a photo to enlarge and sharpen it for better viewing.
These two (above and below) were captured within a few minutes of each other as Steve Sinclair and I attempted to get photos of a rare northern jacana at Estero Llano Grande State Park in Weslaco, Texas.
The Convention Center and World Birding Center at South Padre Island always offer a wide array of bird photography opportunities.
I really liked the “v” formation of these spoonbills in early morning light.
Later this week, we’ll take a look at photos from my recent south Texas ranch visits.
Let me put you onto a good used camera and lens deal. If you need any Canon equipment at a bargain price, a photographer in Corpus Christi has several camera bodies, a 600 mm lens and a 100-400 mm lens for sale. Just let me (firstname.lastname@example.org) know you are interested and I’ll forward your contact information to him.
Here are some “odds and ends” photos from this past summer and fall which haven’t appeared in newsletters:
Just click on a photo to enlarge and sharpen it for viewing. Advance arrows are available when you click on the right margin of an image.
The photo above was done with a 24-105 mm lens and Canon 5D full sensor camera, hand held.
Both of these butterfly shots were done with the Canon ESO 1D Mark IV and a 300mm f4 Canon lens with Feisol tripod and ball head.
Coming at me upside down!!!
This night heron was photographed from beside a county road west of Edinburg. Summer and fall rains created excellent ephemeral habitats for spoonbills, ducks, herons, wood storks, etc..
This green kingfisher was feeding at a resaca (oxbow) in the Sabal Palm Sanctuary east of Brownsville.
I’m waiting for fall colors. With McAllen temperatures hovering around 85 degrees, it’s hard to guess when north Texas will begin to look like autumn. Are you seeing color in the woods yet?
On Thursday and Saturday this past week, I guided nature photography groups on tours to South Padre Island and to the National Butterfly Center at Mission. The photographers were attending the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival in Harlingen with several hundred birders from around the U.S. Since photographers need to get much closer to their subjects than birders and they need to spend more time with a subject than birders, it helps to have the groups separated.
Here are some of the images I captured while coaching the other photographers. Enjoy!
Click on the right edge of photos to enlarge and sharpen them for better viewing.
Shots from the RGV Birding Festival Photo Trip to South Padre Island:
I was lucky enough to capture these brown pelicans as they hit the Laguna Madre.
The following shots are from our RGV Birding Festival trip to the National Butterfly Center:
More photos from this summer and fall, coming soon.
*** For anyone looking to get a bargain on some photography equipment, here are several items recently offered for sale by a Corpus Christi photographer. If you are interested, let me know and I’ll give you his email address.
Canon 600 mm f4 IS lens with lens coat neopreme cover; Canon 100-400 mm f5.6 lens; EOS 1D Mark III, EOS 7D, and EOS 50D cameras. The original boxes, straps, etc. come with these.