Mountain Bluebird of happiness in the snow covered Ranchos de Taos valley today. This gorgeous, happy little creature was hopping along the fence and tree line paralleling the road we were on. We slowed down and came to a stop where this bird playfully dropped to the verge for a snack, then back up to the fence for a few photos, repeating this playful behavior a few times, with more photos at each break. Today, I believe, we watched happiness in action. Thanks for looking. G
Horned Lark on another photography adventure in the San Luis Valley, Colorado yesterday. Vast expanses of white and white-out with blizzard conditions at times. Two bald eagles, a Zone-tailed Hawk, Peregrine Falcon, numerous Red-tailed Hawks, a large flocks of Ravens, Crows, and Magpies along with thousands of these Horned Larks in huge flocks, foraging around the edge of the fields. Thanks for looking. G
White-Breasted Nuthatch on the Ash tree in San Cristobal, New Mexico. This is a predominant attitude and posture for this little fellow. Scarpering frenetically up and down and around the tree trunks is another. Fun to watch for sure. Having a fast trigger finger definitely helps. You can read more on the White-Breasted Nuthatch here. Thanks for looking. G
Cottonwood Crows. Every morning the Crows gather in the Cottonwood tree in San Cristobal NM. The crow on the right seems to be saying “Honey, I’m home!” after the graveyard shift. There are many characters among the crows in the cottonwood. I look forward to each morning when their personalities shine. Thanks for looking. G
Mallard duck on ice. I love the way these little creatures behave deliberately. Paddle to the edge of the ice, waddle out onto the ice, stand there and do nothing. Time passes. I made some images and moved on. A little while later, when I return, the Mallard is standing stock still, in the same position. I can only assume, enjoying a moment, warming up in the morning sun is a cross species trait. Thanks for looking. G
Western Kingbird on the wire southern Colorado. We were driving along and this bird kept bopping along just ahead of us. As soon as I would stop the car and level the camera, it would pop off to the next section of fence. After four attempts it appeared to be enjoying the game. On the fifth time, it waited for us on the fence line and I got off five frames, only to take off again in to the field and beyond. Thanks for looking. G
Juvenile Canyon Towhee on the feeder in the garden, San Cristobal, NM. We have a family of Canyon Towhee’s that have returned for the last couple of years. It was nice to see them here in the valley again this year. They occupy the feeder with the Scrub Jays, the House Fiches, Evening Grosbeaks, Nuthatches, Crows and Magpies. We haven’t seen the Townsend Solitaires, Chickadees or Tanagers this year. Things change. Thanks for looking. G
Red-Tailed Hawk, Arroyo Hondo, NM. Every now and then I like to revisit Poet Laureate Ted Hughes Poem, “Hawk Roosting” You can read it below. Thanks for looking. G
I sit in the top of the wood, my eyes closed.
Inaction, no falsifying dream
Between my hooked head and hooked feet:
Or in sleep rehearse perfect kills and eat.
The convenience of the high trees!
The air’s buoyancy and the sun’s ray
Are of advantage to me;
And the earth’s face upward for my inspection.
My feet are locked upon the rough bark.
It took the whole of Creation
To produce my foot, my each feather:
Now I hold Creation in my foot
Or fly up, and revolve it all slowly –
I kill where I please because it is all mine.
There is no sophistry in my body:
My manners are tearing off heads –
The allotment of death.
For the one path of my flight is direct
Through the bones of the living.
No arguments assert my right:
The sun is behind me.
Nothing has changed since I began.
My eye has permitted no change.
I am going to keep things like this.
— Ted Hughes
Sentinel Birds at the Saint Francis Church, Ranchos de Taos. The pigeons are a favorite photo op at the world famous adobe church. I guess one could describe it as “praise” when thirty or forty of them lift off all at once. Thanks for looking. G
Canada Geese, on the banks of a catchment pond, Eagle Nest, New Mexico. We took a drive today around the Enchanted Circle, at times, in blizzard conditions. Following lunch and a pint in Angel Fire, on the drive home, this pair of geese popped up on the embankment of a catchment pond. They have a propensity for popping up. Fun day! Thanks for looking. G
Great Blue Heron,fishing in the irrigation channels at the Bosque del Apache, San Antonio, NM. I feel like I know this bird personally. Each time we visit the “Bosque” I am sure we are seeing the same bird, in the same location, as on previous visits. Well anyway if it isn’t the same bird, I like to pretend it is. Funny thing though… I feel it knows me! Thanks for looking. G