Category Archives: Shore Bird

Yellowleg In Marshlands

Yellowlegs are not particularly choosy over where they get food. Give them a stretch of water they can stand in and they are happy.

Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands

There are two types, but they look almost identical. The bill length is the main difference.

Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands

They live all along the coasts of the US and Canada. A marsh, swamp, beach, all water with food.

Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands

At times they will stand in the same spot and bob their head, over and over. The original ‘booble head’.

Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands

Other small wading birds look almost the same, and mix with them in flocks. When out shooting we usually just call them ‘shore birds’ and worry about details later. Way too confusing.

Yellowleg In Marshlands
Yellowleg In Marshlands

Photographed in ACE Basin, South Carolina.

Swamp To Shore, Pelican

In the Lowcountry we are blessed with having the ability to photograph marshlands, swamps, and the shore. It’s all right here.

The other day it was a time for shore, Pelicans, and shrimpers.

Swamp To Shore, Pelican
Swamp To Shore, Pelican

The Brown Pelicans didn’t disappoint. Prehistoric, but oh so agile.

Swamp To Shore, Pelican
Swamp To Shore, Pelican

Taken at my usual Pelican spot, on the shrimp boat pier. I can stand there and take my pick of fly by shots.

If I don’t get a few good ones it’s nobody’s fault but mine.

Earth Day 2019

For Earth Day 2019 I thought to publish a photograph that shows us what we have, and what we could easily lose. I think this is a day where we can be allowed a short ‘soap box speech’.

The photograph was taken where a delicate balance is working, but can be so easily tipped over.

Clear and flowing water, both fresh and tidal, are needed for this ecosystem to exist. Charleston, South Carolina, is one of the fastest growing places in the US…and it’s a straight shot from here. This would not be the first land to be lost to uncontrolled development.

Earth Day 2019
Earth Day 2019

Roseate Spoonbills, like the ones above, are actually benefiting from climate changes. They have lost habitat all through Florida, but these marshes here are warm enough now for tropical birds. A bright spot if the marshes are protected.

As for these Alligators, well no housing areas are going to allow dinosaurs to wander around. The water, and housing would doom them.

Last is the hundred small shore birds dotting the background here. All subtropical, and none would do well feeding in parking lots.

Now the good news, this photograph is from a huge protected area, for the foreseeable future they are safe. But it could never exist without knowing it’s needs and help.

Funding and government support is going in the total wrong direction now. Off shore oil drilling was approved here. No one wants it, but no one asked either.

OK, end of Earth Day rant.

Thanks,

Ted

 

Female Stilt

This is (probably) a female Black-necked Stilt.

Female Stilt
Female Stilt

I have never been able to tell one from the other. But… I never researched it either.

Apparently the female has more brown than black on their wings and shoulders.

Female Stilt
Female Stilt

I guess all you need to do is wait around until they stand on their head.

Female Stilt
Female Stilt

I never would have thought of that.

Shore Birds, Stilt

To make things easy we simply refer to them as ‘shore birds’.

Shore Birds, Stilt
Shore Birds, Stilt

The bigger Black-necked Stilt stands out, the rest are so similar most times they look alike.

Shore Birds, Stilt
Shore Birds, Stilt

However, here there is 2 types of birds here, though the same family.

Shore Birds, Stilt
Shore Birds, Stilt

The brown birds are both Greater Yellowlegs, and Lesser Yellowlegs.

Lesser having a shorter bill, by half. But really unless you know what to look for, and have the other species close by, how could you tell.

Shore Birds, Stilt
Shore Birds, Stilt

Monochrome Marsh

Getting these images is a lot harder when the color is gone. Texture and contrast take over and in this environment that can be ‘patchwork busy’.

Monochrome Marsh
Monochrome Marsh

I started with what I think was the most difficult photograph. Every shade you can think of is here. I think the thing saving this image is the large mix of species. Doesn’t hurt there is a little action happening.

Monochrome Marsh
Monochrome Marsh

Above is all contrast. White Wood Stork becomes the focal point.

Monochrome Marsh
Monochrome Marsh

Besides being an Alligator the texture of the skin pushes the subject out from the water. Be nice if the water was flat but it’s a swamp.

Monochrome Marsh
Monochrome Marsh

Like the Wood Stork photograph above this is light on dark. Being a young Spoonbill helped since they are lighter in color. The splashing water showed better than I thought it might.

Monochrome Marsh
Monochrome Marsh

And the final shot, a marsh landscape. Personally I think black and white landscape images are almost always boring. The three elements of ‘front, middle, and back’ are typically flat or really heavy contrast to make some definition.

In a marsh landscape like this it’s easier.

The front, small shore birds, darkened ripples of water.

The middle, so many big Alligators it’s like a used car lot.

The back, shades and texture from the reeds, mud, misc. stuff. All that gives some depth.

Articles like this, and black and white, make me think different and keep things interesting.

Oh yeah, these are really all black and white, Monochrome Marsh just sounded better.