Friday, May 28, 2021

Random stuff...

I spend a lot of my free time these days trying to match up old photos with old blog IF you see any weird posts pop up and then disappear that's what is happening.  I recently said Summer is Flexing her Muscles and so the heat is rising, afternoons are good to be inside with the AC on while I do my photo replacements...I almost have it down to a scientist, ALMOST...

Eastern Towhee at the Cemetery 

 We need some rain so Im watering the plants every day that is a chore but we have not had humidity so it dries out very fast, the last 2 days we had some humidity and even a tiny shower.  Then last night it my plants are happy.  Saw this today when I went out, 

I was happy to see they put up a blinking light and these cones to slow people down and they had 4 signs at this intersection...I hope the cows are home safe.  

The Vernal pool was busy with Green Herons all busy looking for frogs...last yr they nested nearby and I think this year they nested here again, I saw 6 in total fact a few of them could have been young ones, they fledge at 30 to 35 days after hatching.  

Im trying out a new to me camera.  I was about ready to give up and relist it, because I need a bigger view finder.  I Love my old camera but now it's giving zoom motor problems.  SO if I don't keep this Nikon B700 I will sell it on ebay and purchase the same Panasonic again, I really love my old camera. (Panasonic Lumix FZ80) It has a huge view finder, it's easy to use, the buttons are all in a logical place...its fully manual if you want, and it's pretty tough and stands up pretty good to my abuse.  I think it's the sand and pollen that has ruined the zoom motor as that lens feeds out it picks up contaminates, especially in spring. I do try to clean it off. 

This was taken with the FZ 80 Carolina Wren in my yard

This was taken with the B700 Chipping Sparrow at the Cemetery 

The B700 is 20.1 Megapixel, the FZ 80 is only 18.1...they both have 60X zoom, and 4 K video.  
I dont want to rush my decision, because I like it better now than the day I first started using it about 3 weeks ago.  Because of the smaller view finder I'm not able to spot birds up in trees as quickly so that is a Big Minus.  It  has taken me this long just to become familiar with the menu of the camera.  And I still don't understand all of it. 

This I took with the B700

This one below with the FZ 80

Quality wise it's about equal but ease of use the FZ 80 is much faster, easier to find the buttons in a quick grab, and just overall I enjoy using it more.  Even with the zoom motor failing it zooms faster. 

So that's something I have to decide.  

I have my very own Blue Jay, he sits in my window tree so I call him my Blue Jay, 

There is racoon visiting my yard again...I tried to photo him thru the window glass and it's at last 50 ft away so not a good shot but I saw movement and zoomed in and that's what I saw...

I know Annie has been going out for barks lately...I guess she saw him. 
I did relocate 4 squirrels outta my yard over the weekend.  3 males and one non nursing female. There's 4 more that are making me crazy so they may be going soon.  This time of year the forest is full of food.  

Solitary Sandpiper at the vernal pool...

A couple weeks ago I took my bike to McBee...the sand is deep there but I had a go at  it.  And I have been trying to figure out how to access a pond that shows on the map in the management looks interesting, I found a service road but the area is fenced and the gate is locked so I need to speak to one of the rangers and see how to get in there...While I was searching I found several  Hooded Warbler, the males would not sit still for a photo but this female did...

If the males hadn't been singing I would never have known this was the female...
So a quiet week in my week is supposed to be cooler so I hope to get out and explore more.  I had my final shot last Thursday.  

Every day is a new Adventure.

Friday, May 21, 2021

Huntington Beach SP

Super long post...
As promised from my last post here is the rack I purchased, if I had to review it for the money it's perfect,.it's not the best made one, and it's not the best quality, but for the price it's just right...
It's really simple after you put it together, mount it via the 2 inch trailer hitch receiver, it will hold 2 bikes, what I really like is the way it folds down out of the way so I can get into the cargo area without removing the bike...Its a bit annoying to put the pin back in with the weight of the bike on it but it's manageable. Here I did have the bike off but you can lower the rack with the bike on too...the gear shifter I replaced is working well...

So feeling confident that the bike wont fall off I took a 2.5 hr drive to the coast to try out my pedal the 2 mile beach walk...OK here is where human error comes into play...I got a late start and arrived at high tide...10:30 AM so I had some difficulty finding hard packed sand on the ride IN...Because the fishermen set up all down the beach...and I would have to steer behind them in the loose sand,  or risk being tangled up in their lines, if I go in front of them so I didn't consider that either.  I pedaled in and out of them till I came to the service road. Its about 1/3 the way down.

Fishermen lined up

I pedaled the  service road the staff use when they take a short cut in their ATV to make rounds, and it was sandy and had sand spurs that  stuck in my tires, did not cause a flat, but gave some worry and the beginning part of that trail was ankle deep sand and I had to push the bike...
So those are the trouble shooting things I ran into,
but once I arrived at the jetty cove area I had a blast. 

Parked the bike and left my backpack on it, and  made my way to the jetty  salt marsh ponds,

 found Semipalmated Plover, Least Tern, Black Bellied Plover, Snowy Egret, Willet, Wilson's Plover with chicks, and two Whimbrel, one took to the air and flew to a pond farther away but one hung out for a photo opt.  


The Wilson's Plover with a chick they had 3 chicks altogether

Hiding behind Mom, and Papa made sure I didn't get too close..

I came upon this odd couple they were together  A couple of bachelors maybe...a Sanderling with a Ruddy Turnstone.  Besties

They always remind me of an ice cream sundae...dripping with color

Oh and a couple of Oyster Catchers showed up----> distant view..

The group of Terns had some company with them so I started to try and pick through that to see what's in's like sorting thru straight pins, or needles in haystacks looking for the subtle differences,

The big ones of course the Royal Tern.

Some are ringed I noticed...

Then I found some  Sandwich Terns, with the little yellow tip of the beak and much smaller than the royals 

also some ringed.

And a flying Sandwich...

When I see a Tern in the air, the first thing I look for is the wing tips, the second is leg color and the 3rd is bill color.  BUT where is his legs??? LoL tucked in pretty tight. 

found 2 Common Terns in there as well short reddish legs with a bi-color of red and black beak...A more finely shaped head, one on each side of the big tern preening centerstage...

and this batch had one Black Skimmer trying to hide but he stood out like a sore thumb...
 across the waterway on the opposite bank I could make out a few more skimmers.

No hiding that beak

The little Least Terns are all over the place they have a nesting area roped off for them and it's protected by an electric fence!  ZAPPA.....They make  little wooden tents to give some cover to the eggs, protection from Gulls and others.

According to ebird 100 is way too many TOO F'N BAD...Im so fed up with ebird...

After my trek around the cove end of the Jetty I moved the bike to the Jetty proper and had my lunch break and relaxed for at least an hour...nothing like sitting on hot asphalt just taking in all the recreation  happening around me

the Jetty cove

Fighter Jet, F15, or F18? Sound Barrier was Broken, 

If you like to hang out call    843 357 7777

After the rest....I pedaled to the point where you exit the Jetty to head back, tied up the bike and walked to the other end watched these Ruddy Turnstones hunt on the rocks, 

Then it was time to head back....can you find my bike in this photo?

the ride back was fine, what is normally an hr walk of 2 miles I did in about 20 minutes and that's with photo stops!!   I still don't have my biking legs yet.  Anyways it was more of a challenge that I had wanted but I did not figure in the tide, so the beach was wide open for the return I could easily get behind the fishermen the ones who remained most were gone, 

Sanderlings in the surf

 Jelly Fish  make food for the Black Bellied Plover

And a couple of  Sea Star...
did you know they can grow a new limb if one comes up missing for some "unforeseen" reason? 

I parked before exiting the park and walked along the sides of the Mullet Pond, had more Black Bellied Plover, along with Least Sandpiper, and Semipalmated Sandpiper along with Semipalmated Plover...

Semi Plover with a long worm...

a Least Sandpiper in the sand...

A black Bellied Plover in a hurry to see what's up over there....

The Semipalmated Sandpiper, 

The word semipalmated refers to a slight amount of webbing between the toes...

and the usual Great Blue Heron

And Yellowlegs, greater 

I was a tired puppy and got home around 8 pm...if not for having  to fed the girls  I would stay over, but they depend on me. 
 I was surprised at how crowded it was people have come out of the woodwork like 
wolf spiders on the the wood pile, hopefully they will return to the mall But judging from all the fun they were having, I rather doubt it teehee! 

Till Next safe out there...

Every day is a new Adventure.