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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Keeping Watch

American Robin keeping watch over a couple of Belted Galloways at Chandler Pond Farm in Vermont.



Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Red Fox vs. Rabbit (A happy ending for the rabbit)

As I posted the other day, the fox family has returned to the den in my backyard. There has been a lot of activity and a lot of hunting going on. The other evening, I was photographing this adorable bunny just a few feet away from me.


I was thinking to myself that this bunny really isn't safe to be in my yard these days. Something made me look to my left and there was Mama Fox entering the yard. She saw the bunny immediately.


 She got down into the stalking position and slowly headed across the yard towards the bunny.My heart started pounding and my hands were shaking so badly that some of the images I took came out blurry from camera shake.  It was happening fast, and I didn't know what to do. Should I scream to alert the bunny? That would have really made Mama mad at me. She knew I was there because she could hear my shutter clicking, yet she never took her eyes off the rabbit.


I decided I needed to let nature take it's course, and just hope for the best. Mama got within a few feet of both myself and the rabbit, and they both took off into my neighbors yard. Within less than a minute, Mama returned empty handed. I was relieved that the rabbit got away. 
It was such a surreal thing for me to witness. I can't believe some of the things I have seen this summer in my own backyard.

Just to let you know, I stopped shooting as the fox got closer to the rabbit. If the fox was successful with the hunt, it is not something that I wanted to witness or capture with my camera. A professional nature photographer would have done that, but in the few seconds that I had to make the decision, I immediately knew that this was my choice, and I don't regret it at all.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Northern Flicker

This Northern Flicker was doing some ground feeding in my backyard the other evening.





Sunday, June 26, 2016

Backyard Red Fox.......They're back!

They're Baaaaaaack!!!! After a nearly two week absence, the fox family has moved back into the den in my backyard. They have been back for over a week now and there has not been any coyote sightings or any danger calls at night.

Don't have much time to post today so here are two pictures of two of the kits to share with you. They are getting big.





Friday, June 24, 2016

Crossing Nines at Granite Links Golf Course, Quincy MA

Had a wonderful cousins get together last night at The Crossing Nines Bar at Granite Links in Quincy. It was a beautiful evening to sit out on the deck for cocktails and dinner. The view from up there is one of the best views around, and we were treated to a beautiful sunset.

Sun setting over the Blue Hills:



And a wonderful view of Boston from the golf course.



Wednesday, June 22, 2016

American Robin

The Robin is such a common bird that it often times gets overlooked by nature photographers. This is an image I made last evening in my backyard of a robin who was standing on our shed, and was communicating with another robin who was somewhere in a nearby tree. Fun to watch and photograph, as I clicked the shutter each time he/she would "sing".




Monday, June 20, 2016

Fathers Day 2106

I hope you enjoyed your weekend and had a good Fathers Day. We had a family cookout here at our house. It was a wonderful day.

Here is my son N, celebrating his very first Fathers Day. I am so proud of the wonderful man and father that he is.



And how adorable is Henry?????????? Love him!


Saturday, June 18, 2016

Still Life Photography

Had a wonderful exercise last night put on by one of my fellow camera club members, Theresa Oliver. Here is a link to her website, http://www.powderandpixel.com/

Theresa set up a "tea party in the woods" for us to shoot. It was a perfect evening weather wise and it was also a lot of fun to be out shooting with friends.







I personally love this one......




Thank you to Theresa for all of the work she put into setting this up for us. Her attention to detail is wonderful and her eye for seeing the beauty in the world is inspiring.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Westport MA Allen's Pond Wildlife Sanctuary

Took a wonderful day trip to Westport MA with Mr. S yesterday. This is a beautiful coastal town which sits on Buzzard's Bay and the Atlantic Ocean in Southeast MA. It is also a very active farming community.....it is dotted with numerous farms, beautiful open fields, and stone walls galore.

Here is one of the farms we passed along our travels


There are several trails you can choose to take at the Allen's Pond Wildlife Sanctuary. We chose to take the Coastal Trail. It starts at the parking area, meanders through an open field with a beautifully mowed path that leads you to the ocean.

Mr. S walking the trail towards the ocean


A Red Winged Blackbird perches on one of the nesting boxes


A beachgoer enjoying the view taken from behind as I was approaching the beach on the trail


What we saw when we arrived at the beach



Notice the stone wall in the background


A Cormorant in flight


Beach Roses and rocks


The trail takes you along the rocks down the beach, up to a rocky path and then down off the rocks onto another rocky beach which is a beautiful cove.
 15 image panorama. 



A Common Tern in flight



A Cloudscape......it was a glorious day


Flowers growing along one of the stone walls


Wildflowers


Last but not least, we had a wonderful late lunch/early dinner at the Bayside, which is located across the street from Allen's Pond. Had one of the best lobster rolls ever.........delicious fresh lobster meat piled high on a bed of lettuce on a grilled hot dog roll served with a side of melted butter and mayonnaise. Truly delicious.


Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Abington Swans 2016 Update

Nature never ceases to amaze me. The resiliency of these swans is remarkable to say the least. After losing the first clutch of eggs due to human interference, I'm happy to tell you that the Abington Swans have built themselves another nest, and have laid a second clutch of eggs on the opposite side of the pond.
This is the second year in a row that a second clutch of eggs were laid. Sadly, the second clutch was not viable last year and after literally months of Mama Swan sitting on the eggs, the nest was finally abandoned. Praying and hoping that the person responsible for damaging the eggs does not do the same thing this time.

The new nest.....



Monday, June 13, 2016

Backyard Fox Update

It's been a whirlwind couple of weeks in my backyard land of the wild animals, so I figured I would give you an update.

I had gotten to know the routine of the fox and could predict when I would see them. One evening as I sat on the deck with my camera in hand, I noticed something coming through the woods from the direction of the den. It was around 6 PM and the area of the woods was in deep shadows. I assumed it was the adult fox, until if got closer and I saw the enormous size of the animal. It was an adult....very healthy looking.....coyote. My stomach sank as I knew the fox were in danger.


We had a few evenings of the sound of the fox danger call. It was disturbing to say the least. Things have quieted down. The fox no longer live in the den in my backyard. In my heart, I want to believe that they have moved to another safer den. From all of the research I have done, this very well could be the case, as the fox typically have one or two "back up" dens. Occasionally during the night we still can hear the fox call, but it is further and deeper into the woods.

Here are the last set of images that I took of the fox kits. I don't think I will ever see them again so I am thankful that I got these images of them.



This kit was about 5 feet away from me when I shot this.



I'm not sad and don't want you to be sad because in my heart and in my mind these little ones are still playing and roaming the woods and living happy little fox lives. Amen!



Sunday, June 12, 2016

Shadow Lake Concord VT

Ten vertical images stitched together to make this image of Shadow Lake on a very blustery morning just before the rain began to fall. I was hoping that more of the lupine in the field would have been in bloom, but they seem to be a little behind this year. On a clear day, a lovely view of the White Mountains in NH can be seen.



Saturday, June 11, 2016

Abington MA Celebrates Flag Day 2016

Happy Flag day to you. I hope you are enjoying your weekend. I took a walk through Island Grove, in my hometown of Abington, with my camera today to visit some of the Flag Day festivities.

The Civil War Memorial Bridge was built in 1912 as a part of the town's bicentennial founding. Island Grove had been a place where the abolitionist's would often meet. (Click images to enlarge)




This is Christie Coombs on the right and Clancy Barrett on the left. Christie's husband Jeff was killed on flight 91 on Sept. 11th 2001 terrorist attacks. Christie founded the Jeffrey Coombs Memorial Foundation which raises money to provide financial assistance and emotional support to families in need, as well as funding enrichment programs in the Abington Schools, and Scholarships to Abington students.


This is a steel beam taken from one of the Twin Towers in NYC after the collapse on Sept. 11. Very emotional to see and touch this remaining piece of history.



This is Carol Najarian. Carol is a lifetime member of the Abington Historical Society and the Secretary of the Abington Garden Club.


There was a wonderful Civil War Encampment, as well as a Boy Scout Encampment held at the Grove.







Weather permittng, I hope to return for tonight's festivities.