Sunday, January 4, 2009

Sunday Six: January 4th

Barnegat Lighthouse

The light was recently replaced and the re-lighting ceremony was this past Wednesday.


Long-tailed Ducks

Why are they staring at the one in the middle?


Herring Gull

This gull is upset because it failed in its attempt to steal a crab from a common loon. The loon simply dove away from the gull surfacing twenty or so meters away to each its catch in peace.


Harlequin Duck

This female was splashing about at the edge of a small group of a dozen or so ducks.


Harlequin Ducks

The female has a rather drab plumage when compared to the fancily dressed males.

Sanderling

This fellow seemed to be chasing his shadow up and down the waterline.

I spent several hours this past Saturday at Barnegat Lighthouse State Park on the Jersey Shore. It was a bit on the cool side, with 37ยบ F as the high and winds gusting up to 18 MPH. Fortunately it was sunny and didn't feel too cold. And I did dress warmly.

The park is known for its lighthouse and for the birds which over winter there. And the bird most come to see is the fancy plumaged harlequin duck. By February there will hundreds of ducks in the inlet of a variety of species, along with loons (I saw two species on this visit), brant, gulls, shorebirds, cormorants, and even the occasional harbor seal.

6 comments:

tmcchesney said...

I am really jealous! This looks like an absolutely beautiful place to shoot pictures! I love each and every one of these - awesome!!

LauraHinNJ said...

I love Barnegat Light, but I'm convinced it's the coldest place in the world!

I haven't made my yearly visit yet... later this month probably.

Beautiful pics, btw.

365photosin2009 said...

These are so neat! The harlequin ducks are beautiful...

Dogeared said...

Maybe the two ducks are looking because the middle duck farted?

;-)

Those are some wonderful bird photos - you're lucky to live in such a wildlife-filled place!

MevetS said...

Thank you all. I'm glad yo like them.

@ Tammy: it is a great place to shoot pictures, but as Laura notes, it can be brutally cold when all the good birds are there. And it always seems windy.

@ Laura: I would definitely wait a couple of weeks. Other than the long-tailed ducks the large flocks weren't there yet.

@ Julie: yeah the harlequins steal the show, and they tend to be up close often posing on the rocks.

@ Helen: but there are no bubbles? For being the most densely populated state in the union NJ does have a non-trivial amount of open space. But the pressures on that space are enormous.

BobbieCoughlin said...

Great shots--I like the gull the best. It looks SO irritated and frustrated!