|Clapper Rail, Rallus longirostris; Bolivar Peninsula, Texas|
Earlier this week I made a trip to the Bolivar Peninsula in Texas, to photograph shorebirds. Houston Audubon has a shorebird sanctuary on the flats that host thousands of shorebirds. In 2006, I spoke at the Houston Audubon’s, Galveston chapter. While there, local birders took me birding on the flats. I was astonished at the number of American Avocets feeding in the Gulf waters along the peninsula. I decided then, that I would return in the near future and photograph the shorebirds.
After 7 years, I finally made it back to the Bolivar peninsula. Though I arrived at the same time of year, the thousands and thousands of Avocets I had looked forward to photographing were not there. There were however, plenty of other birds to photograph. I had a great time and got a lot of images that I will be posting over the next week or so.
My “Lifer” for the trip, was a Clapper Rail that I found at the edge of a salt marsh. When I stopped to photograph the rail, it disappeared into the reeds; but after a few minutes of waiting, it walked back onto the open shoreline for this portrait.
Other than Sora rails, I have seen very few rails. Rails are not rare, but they are very secretive and shy, preferring to be heard and not seen. I was just lucky to have seen this particular bird. I was in the right place at the right time, but that is usually how it is with bird photography.
Nikon D800, Nikkor 500mm f4, 1/1250 second @ f 5.6, ISO 400