At this point in the year I had hoped to be presenting some shots of some of our annual winter visitors, particularly finches like grosbeaks, redpolls and crossbills. Alas, the grim winter finch forecast appears to be depressingly all-too-accurate to date and I have not seen one of these birds; a stark contrast to last year when they were oh-so abundant.
Well, you have to make the most of the opportunities you have so the past month I’ve been out scouting the rivers and the few remaining ponds and lakes with open water in search of waterfowl that have yet to leave, or have decided to tough out the winter for one reason or another.
One such pond is Elliston Park in Calgary’s east, where I have been able to practice my birds-in-flight shots. The ducks here regularly fly up & down the water as they are periodically flushed by passing dog walkers and the like.
Another area I recently checked out was Fish Creek Provincial Park in south Calgary. The open river is somewhat of a magnet for goldeneye and mallards, which in turn attracts the attention of Bald Eagles who are always a sight to behold.
And finally, another bird that is always a treat to see is the Pileated Woodpecker. This female happened to fly across the road in front of my car and start hammering away in a tree just of the road in great light for photography – sometimes you get lucky!