Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Bulletin #14 - Monterey CA #2

David McDonald Photography
Friendswood Texas
Oct 3-2007

Bulletin #14 – Monterey CA birds September 2007 – part 2

Hello friends,

I was back in California on vacation over the week of Labor Day.

This bulletin will be devoted to shorebirds and other non-passerines.

The first bird is the Black Oystercatcher (Haematopus bachmani). I have taken hundreds of photos of oystercatchers, but this one, taken last month, is the best ever. The light was right etc.

Here is the Snowy Plover (Charadrius alexandrinus) in non-breeding plumage.

Here is the juvenile plumage Semi-palmated Plover (Charadrius semipalmatus).

The Wandering Tattler (Tringa incana) is a sandpiper that breeds in Alaska along streams and winters along the Pacific coast. It inhabits rocky areas rather than beaches. Here it is in the non-breeding plumage. The yellow legs, overall plain gray coloration and white eye-ring are the field marks.

The Black Turnstone is another Alaska breeder, but along the coast. It also winters along the Pacific coast. Here is the non-breeding plumage.

In an earlier bulleting, I had photos of breeding plumage Red-necked Phalarope (Phalaropus lobatus). Here is the juvenile plumage. The streaking on the back indicate a juvenile.

Sometimes the light is just right to give a striking photo. I caught this Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) at dawn, just as he reached the crest of the beach and came into the sunlight.

The Carmel River mouth has a nice fresh water lagoon and marsh and is a nature preserve. Because marshy areas are infrequent along the California coast, it is a good location for rails as well as other marsh loving wildlife.

Here is a Virginia Rail (Rallus limicola). This is the adult plumage. The long red bill is diagnostic.

Here is the juvenile plumage Sora (Porzana carolina). Notice there is no black on the throat. The short yellow bill is the field mark for this rail.

I attended a NANPA (North American Nature Photographer Association) seminar in Houston in August 2006. It helped me tremendously to take my photos to a higher level of quality. One of the speakers said that an important thing to do is when you have spent some time looking in one direction for subjects, turn 180 degrees and perhaps the best photo opportunity is behind you.

One morning at sunrise, the sun was a brilliant red ball. I was photographing the birds on the beach. I turned and looked back at the sun. It was reflecting on the lagoon, as a flock of Brown Pelicans swam through the reflection. This gave a photo of the pelicans in silhouette.

A little further along the beach, there is a cross on a hill above the beach. I caught the sun behind the cross.

All comments and suggestions are welcomed and appreciated.

Happy Birding,

David McDonald

photos copyright 2007 David McDonald

Notice – photos with name preceded with an asterisk (*) were updated for this blog and the text was edited accordingly

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