Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Pic of the Day

   Limpkin – Circle B Bar Reserve; Lakeland, Florida:  About a year ago friends that live in Florida brought my attention to the Circle B Bar Reserve and the rich photo opportunities it presents.   Once an active cattle ranch, the Circle B was purchased by Polk county and the Southwest Florida Water Management Destrict Lands Program as part of the Upper Peace River restoration.  The Reserve is combination of oak  hammocks, freshwater marshes, hardwood swamp and lakeshore.   During late January through mid March the reserve is a haven for wading birds, waterfowl, eagles and osprey.
   Earlier this month I was at the Circle B and found the birdlife to be quite impressive.  Hundreds of White Pelicans and Woodstorks crowded the trees that stand in the water impoundments.  Fulvous Tree Ducks, other waterfowl and wading birds were plentiful.  A specialty among the waders was the Limpkin.  Limpkins were quite abundant, perhaps the most limpkins I have seen in one place outside of the Ritch Grissom Wetlands at Veria, Florida.
   While I was photographing a group of Limpkins along the shoreline of one of the water impoundments this Limpkin flew by.  I could not believe my good fortune.  With my camera already set in autofocus mode I quickly swung the lens toward the flying bird.  The autofocus sensor locked onto the head of the bird and snapped into focus as I shot a series of images.  Out of the six images shot, this one captured the wings in just the right position with a body posture that is indicative of this species in flight.  Of course, part of luck is being in the right place at the right time, and staying observant to what is happening around you.   

Nikon D300, Nikkor 500mm f4, Digital Capture ISO 200, 1/400 sec. @ f7.1

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