Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Short Commute

Brant Goose on migration
Yes, I normally post pictures of animals taken in exotic locations worldwide. When I am home, I am normally behind a computer, editing or planning my next expedition. But every now and then I am lured into action by animals closer to home: in this case about a hundred yards from my house. As I went out this morning, I noticed a flock of Brant geese feeding along the edge of the beach and ran to grab my camera.
These small birds - like miniature Canada geese - pass by here every year en route to their breeding grounds in SW Alaska. They stop and rest and feed on eelgrass (their favorite food) along the shore.  Although hunted in the refuges where they breed (the name "refuge" being something of a misnomer), they are quite accustomed to people and cars along Alki Beach below our house, and are MUCH easier to approach here than they are in Alaska. I set up my tripod and my 500mm lens and started shooting, inching closer with every few shots, thinking I was in a good spot to capture some interesting behavior.
In the end I only got 4-5 minutes before the entire flock of 30-40 birds took off en masse. No, it wasn't me, but a pair of Bald Eagles passing overhead. These B-52's of the bird world were enough to send these little geese up: they never returned. This simple shot of one calling along the shore was the best I got; I just hope they come back tomorrow.

Nikon D300 with 500mm f4 lens

1 comment:

  1. Lovely shot! I have never managed to see one. Though plenty of Bald Eagles, including one who swooped the car on the way home today, wish I'd had my camera handy for that! It was huge, more like a Pterydactyl! :)