The Harrier Ballet

young harrier perch

Friends, this hatch year Northern Harrier is leaping from his perch in response to an attack by a hatch year Bald Eagle.  I showed the fray in an earlier post.  Yesterday I went to Hawk Ridge in Duluth Minnesota in preparation for the upcoming fall migration of raptors and passerines.  Not much to report yet, but found some cedar waxwings and white throated sparrows on the hill top so til Tomorrow MJ

Badlands Macro-Lichens

badlands lichens

Friends, i love the little landscapes of the badlands as well as the big landscapes.  These lichens challenge my macro skills when i have only the big zoom with me on a hike.  They are very colorful if you look closely enough. See what is there. til Tomorrow MJ

Looking Up

wall patterns signed

Friends, in my heart i am always in the badlands, when i can’t sleep at night, i count the erosion patterns that run down the slopes into the Little Missouri River.  Guess that is why this image appeals to me and why i am sitting low and looking up.  For my friend, kirk and his family, keep looking up. In the journey ahead keep looking up, til Tomorrow MJ

Sagebrush Goldfinch

sepia goldfinch3

Friends, I often struggle with backgrounds that conflict with my subject or are too distracting.  This little goldfinch is a good example of this problem.  All the little branches and twigs were helpful to describe his habitat but distracting cause they all lead out of the frame.  So I am using a sepia toned background to dull the background and bring the little bird and his dinner plate as the undisputed subject of the image.  Do you like? til Tomorrow MJ

Weekly Photo Challenge:Fray

eagle and harrier

Friends, These juvenile birds are in a fray, the Harrier had occupied a post and the Bald Eagle thought he should leave so he dived on the Harrier and they both exploded into the air. I was ready with the big cannon lens (600mm) at Sherburne National Game Refuge.  til Tomorrow MJ

Weekly Photo Challenge here

Green Eyes


Friends, those of you who know cormorants, know that this is a characteristic pose, he is a double-crrested cormorant from Sherburne National Game Refuge near St. Cloud Minnesota, On our little road trip. a whole colony of these birds perched on dead tree stumps..  I love their eye colors, that sea green glow, priceless, til Tomorrow MJ

Cedar in a Cedar

cedar waxwing

Friends, this cedar waxwing was posing from a dead cedar tree in the badlands of North Dakota.  This spring, we found a dead tree with 25 cedar waxwings perched from top to bottom. I had never seen these birds in the badlands, but my mother who lived there in her younger years said that they were often present and were not a rare sighting.  til Tomorrow MJ

A Blue Bird in the Badlands

young lazuli

Friends, not sure of the id of this bird, but loved the blue feathers on his back and tail, since it rained much of the time that we were in the badlands this summer, i took a lot of birdie pictures.  Some are immature birds and some are females and all are birds that i don’t normally see in Wisconsin.  til Tomorrow MJ

Red Necked Grebe

red neck grebe sharpened

Friends, having a ball working with my new lens, sharper and faster focusing than my old lens, not to mention more magnification (600mm).  This lens for the money is a real bargain, so far the only defect is my shooting technique, but i am practicing for that once in a lifetime shot.  This red-necked grebe is shy and for two summers has eluded me, but i spied him thru the dense blue stem grasses along phantom lake and was able to photograph without a distracting background.  I love the color of the lake when it is slightly choppy as in this image. til Tomorrow MJ

Adult Harrier


Friends, this Northern Harrier is probably an adult male and was hunting on an open field.  You can see the blurred background as i panned with the bird in flight.  This image was taken with my old 100-400mm lens, looking forward to working a similar image with my new 150-600mm lens. til Tomorrow MJ


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