A flower from my Valentine

A macro image featuring the vibrant and curvaceous petals of a tri-coloured rose dedicated to my late husband who brought me flowers each and every Valentines day for forty-two years. These gorgeous flowers are also referred to as rainbow and kaleidoscope roses. I captured this photograph using a Nikkor 100 mm macro lens and a Nikon D7100 in live view mode at a focal length of 100 mm, aperture of F4, shutter speed of 1/8 of second at an ISO of 100. I also used mirror up mode and a tripod to ensure a sharp image while using a low shutter speed.

Wishing you and yours a Happy Valentine’s Day!

Winter’s Day at Parksville Community Park

A snowy winter’s day in Parksville transforms the beach-side community park into a scene from a story book. I processed this image in black and white as it suits the stark and lonely beauty of the barren trees dressed in snow. I captured this image with a Nikon D850 at a focal length of 28mm, aperture of F 7.1, shutter speed 1/100 second, and an ISO of 800.

Available as a print on a variety of media, including fine art papers, stretched canvas, and metal, and as a greeting card.

Sir Pelican

A Brown Pelican displaying breeding colours while in flight over the ocean waters of Los Ayala beach in Nayarit, Mexico.  While Brown Pelicans are somewhat awkward and homely in appearance when seen on land; they are magnificent birds in flight. A plain and somewhat comical bird is transformed,  suddenly elegant in appearance. Their immense Pterodactyl-like wings span two and a half meters and bring to mind dinosaurs.  And indeed, birds with throat pouches such as pelicans are descendants of dinosaurs. 

For those interested in the technical details I captured this image with a Nikon D7100 at a focal length of 185 mm, an aperture of F8, shutter speed 1/1600, and an ISO of 800.

High Breach

A Humpback Whale breaching in the Salish Sea, Vancouver Island, B.C..

Seeing a humpback whale breach is an extraordinary experience! The sight of an enormous whale leaping from the sea while twisting and turning before landing with an enormous crash while feeling the ocean spray and thunder of the crash is spectacular. While breaching is not an uncommon behaviour in humpback whales, witnessing the event feels very fortunate indeed.  It is thought that whales flap their flukes and tales, and breach as a means to communicate with other whales. As you can imagine breaching takes an enormous amount of energy. The larger the splash the further the sound travels.  It is also thought that whales breach to check out their surroundings and cleanse themselves of parasites. I myself like to think that whales also breach for fun and to say hello!

I captured these images while on a four hour wildlife and whale watching tour with Ocean Eco Adventures  a Vancouver Island Green Business who support local wildlife and whale researchers. They offer tours departing from French Creek, Parksville, B.C..  

Flamingos taking flight

A flock of American Flamingos taking flight from the shallow blue-green waters off the coast of Isla Holbox, Quintana Roo, Mexico. Flamingos run on water by propelling themselves along with their webbed feet while flapping their wings to gather speed before taking off in flight. The island of Holbox is a very special place providing a protected sanctuary for a wide variety of birds including American Flamingos. Flamingos migrate here during the spring and summer months taking shelter and feeding on small crustaceans and algae found in the shallow waters offshore. The tiny red crabs found in the waters here are said to give the flamingos their brilliant pink plumage.

I captured this image with a Nikon 850 at a focal length of 500 mm, an aperture of F8, shutter speed of 1/1600, and an ISO of 1200.

Dragonfly in Flight

A male Blue-eyed Darner in flight over the waters of Long Lake in Nanaimo, Vancouver Island, B.C..

Dragonfly in Flight

A male Blue-eyed Darner in flight over the waters of Rice Lake, Lynn Valley, North Vancouver, B.C..

Warm summer days bring to mind one of my favourite insects; dragonflies! The first image is of a male Blue-eyed Darner in flight on a sunny morning over the lake waters of Long Lake, Nanaimo, Vancouver Island, B.C..  The second dragonfly image is also of a male Blue-eyed Darner in flight that I photographed at Rice Lake in Lynn Valley, North Vancouver, B.C. As is often seen with birds the male of the species is more colourful than the female. Male Blue-eyed Darners have big blue eyes, a bright blue face and blue markings on their torsos. Female Darners are also beautiful but their colouring is less striking being primarily brown with green markings.

Dragonflies in flight are always a challenge to photograph. The trick is to wait for one to hover like a helicopter! Both images were photographed with a Nikon D7100 at a focal length of 300 mm. The first image with an aperture of F4, shutter speed 1/1600 and an ISO of 400, and the second image at an aperture of F4, shutter speed 1/400 and an ISO of 1600.

Building the Nest

A Great Blue Heron in flight while carrying a branch to contribute to a nest being built.

A Great Blue Heron in flight while carrying a branch to contribute to a nest being built in a tree in Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C.. The male heron collects nesting material which includes twigs and oftentimes large branches as seen in this particular image, and presents it to the female who will accept or reject the branch as suitable nesting material.

I captured this image in Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C. where a colony of Great Blue Herons nest in the maple, red oak, and London plane trees found in this area which is in close proximity to a the Vancouver’s West End, a high-density area of the  city, every year. The herons typically arrive in late February and early March and remain until late July or early August.  It is a special place where one can observe the courtship rituals and mating of herons, the building of their nests, and the parents caring for their fledglings. One quickly learns to appreciate how important preserving our environment is to wildlife. It is as much of a delight to sit back and observe these birds as it is to capture their beauty in action. For more information see Stanley Park Herons

I captured this image with a Nikon D7100 at a focal length of 300 mm, F4 with a shutter speed of 1/1250 sec and an ISO of 250. I am delighted to share that this image was published and awarded on the fine art photography website 1X.

White Heron

A Great White Heron (Ardea alba) inundated with flies as it wades through shallow ocean waters off the coast of Holbox, Quintana Roo, Mexico.

A high key image of a Great White Heron inundated with flies while wading in the shallow ocean waters off the island of Holbox in Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Great White Herons are not common and typically only seen in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. When I first sighted this bird, I thought it was a Great Egret. However, I later identified this beauty as a White Heron because its legs are yellow as compared to the legs of a Great Egret which are black. Other small but notable differences are that Great White Herons are larger overall and their bills are hefty in appearance as compared to the elegant slim bill of an egret.

Frankly, bird identification can be quite difficult, and at times can prove to be as challenging as photographing them! However, knowing that egrets are a type of heron but that herons are not egrets, that Red-bellied woodpeckers do not have red bellies, and that black birds are not necessarily black birds, the complexity of identifying birds does not come as too much of a surprise.

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