Thursday, 13 November 2014

The Coots Are Back!

When i first began watching and photographing birds it seemed to me that coots were somewhat common and could be seen at local ponds regularly. Last year it seemed coots were almost non existent here on the avalon or as far as i could tell. Now in recent days it seems coots are once again being spotted all over town and this time I'm making sure i get my fill of images before they disappear again.

Besides the few coots around i haven't lucked out with finding any other real interesting birds. On Tuesday fellow photographer Brad James called me with a frantic tone to his voice, "FEMALE LONG -TAILED DUCK AT POND ROAD!!! FULL FRAME SHOTS!!" When i herd those words come out of his mouth i gobbled down my supper and rushed to Kelligrews with hopes of getting some images of this duck. Long Tailed Ducks are quite common around the coast of Newfoundland. However seeing one up close is unheard of. 

When i arrived sure enough the duck was there...but about 200ft away. I decided to wait and see if it would work its way back towards me and Brad. After what seemed like a very long time i decided the light was fading quickly and the chances of this bird staying in the little back pond were slim. So i did what any mental patient or bird photographer would do. I walked across the river in my sneakers and cotton pants in order to be on the same side as the duck. That was a bust, by the time i got in position to shoot the duck had begun feeding closer to the side i was originally on. At this point i really was unsure i was going to get a decent shot. I was wet, cold and far from clean lying in the muddy grass but i walked back around to the other side. Sure enough we got in position and the duck began to work towards us. The sound of our cameras made the duck curious of us. This behaviour is also how i got my images of the coots above. 

The duck made a few close dives before the light faded but in that short time i did get this one image. I cant complain! Not every day you get photo opportunities like this one. It was something Brad & I will certainly remember for years to come.


Also on Tuesday i filled up a few feeders at Neville's Pond here in Paradise. The feeders have already been visited by the following species:

Song Sparrow
Blue Jay
Common Grackle

If things keep going the way they are i predict that by winter the feeders will be swamped with birds. Hopefully something real interesting will visit such as a Chaffinch or a Hoary Redpoll. If things go as planned my next post will involve a review of my new Canon 7D Mark ii and possibly some images of my feeder set up!