Bird Boot Camp Graduation

     Bird Boot Camp with Maxis Gamez continued to some familiar places. Several years ago I photographed the Burrowing Owls of Cape Coral. One never gets enough of those cute little owls though. Day four took us to Gatorland in central Florida where we watched wading birds sitting on top of gators trying to steal the hot dogs the tourist were throwing to them. In March I chronicled the Venice Rookery, which we again visited on our final day five of the workshop.

     Although it was too early in the breeding season for us to see young Burrowing Owlets, we did have a pair of cooperative little wide eyed adult owls who stared at us starring at them. “Gatorland” had a wide variety of marsh and wading birds busy building nests along the expansive lake full of alligators. I practiced with some fill flash techniques and isolating birds for more captivating photos. Maxis was especially good at providing tips and techniques to make our photos a cut about the norm. The sun was not too cooperative on our final day at the Venice Rookery so I concentrated on capturing some flight shots of some of the birds landing on the small crowed bushes used for nesting.

     At the end of the five day boot camp I was whooped. It went too fast but Maxis made every minute a learning experience I hope I never forget. You are never too old to learn new techniques and I feel I upped my game a notch or two. Thank you Maxis (and Karen) and thank you Kathy Williams for the great new photo friendship. I think we graduated with flying colors. Blessings

April's full moon is called the Pink Moon, for the first flowers or pink moss, or pink phlox of spring

This pair of Burrowing Owls starred at us starring at them

I see you Mr Doohickey

And Lord, tell Grandpa I miss him..

On an earlier excursion to Cape Coral I found a rare dark eyed Burrowing Owl caused by a genetic abnormality.

This Cattle Egret at Gatorland was showing breeding colors on the head and chest feathers.

Trying to isolate a bird from a busy background is often challenging

Snowy Egret fly by at Gatorland

Cormorant surfaces at Ding Darling showing its blue-green eye and breeding coloration    

Cormorant surfaces at Ding Darling showing its blue-green eye and breeding coloration


Say Ahhh! of the many gators at Gatorland..

Great Blue Heron catching some rays..

Great Egret doing a display of breeding plumes

White Ibis landing

Snowy Egret taken with fill flash 

The light was challenging at the Venice rookery,,the various birds were busy nesting and feeding hatchlings like this Great Blue Heron chick.

Black bellied whistling ducks fly by in a brief bit of sunlight.

A Great Egret makes its turn to final approach at the rookery.

Great Blue landing on a precarious perch

Great Blue Heron about to take off..

Great Egret touching down like an Angel

Boot Camp Graduates Ms Kathy Williams and Mr "Doohickey"


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