So, as I was floating along…so were these two.
The Pelican is extremely agile in the air, and a great swimmer.
Walking around on shore, well not so much.
Flat foot and clumsy is a better description.
This Brown Pelican joined the group and came in with a nice, slow, landing.
And suddenly proceeded to do a ‘semi-crash’ right in front of them all.
He was close to the shore but had enough depth to get under a little.
And next bobbed up and floated around, all happy with himself.
I guess it’s a bird thing.
I’ve always thought the hardest shots to take are of large flocks of birds.
Here Pelicans, but Egrets, Storks, or whatever are like putting chaos in a bottle.
No matter, something will be ‘less than sharp’. A few birds will look great, but others just in odd postures.
After years of practice I do have a proven method.
Hold the button down, point everywhere.
I’m sure all those ‘expert’ training classes don’t teach this. But really, you have minimal time and the odds are some will be great. Look at these shots, how bad could they be in some of the places we go.
Drifting by was me, not the Pelicans. Usually it’s the other way around, but not here.
For the most part they ignored us.
A completely different way to photograph Pelicans.
This is certainly a more comfortable situation for the birds. And of course there are young birds just learning to get around.
Taken at Bird Key, coastal South Carolina.
I have seen them do all kinds of gymnastics, still it doesn’t get old.
This young bird looked to be almost exercising.
They do practice this as juveniles. Some fly up a few feet and drop down head tilted sideways. They dive from big heights when fishing and this is learning how to do it.
Taken at the sand bar end of Bird Key, the high dunes making a nice backdrop.
This dune is man made. The sand was dredged from the bottom of Charleston Harbor. We have a deep water port, but hurricanes change the depth every year.
The cost of adding the sand to this Key was less than other options. The state port wins, the birds win. A who knows, the sand may have started out here before the last hurricane anyway.
One of those times when you don’t know where to look first. At this spot on the Key I decided to just focus and shoot.
Below should be viewed on a large screen.
Looking through the ‘crowd’ here you can find Pelicans, White Ibis, Gulls, Egrets, Herons, and I’m sure some other shore birds.
What was a little unnerving was how many others were overhead, and behind the boat.
More than a few swimming nearby too.