Friday, March 9, 2012

Ones That Got Away

Here's an image of one of those fancy ducks we saw on our trip to Barnegat Light State Park.

The problem with diving ducks is that they dive! Usually just at the moment you train the camera on them and click the shutter.

Here's another different fancy duck, diving.

I didn't even have time to level the camera and it was gone. Loons and grebes are prone to do this as well. But with a little patience, and a lot of shutter pushing, it is possible to capture these dandies.

Here's an image of the first duck species, pre-dive, albeit a bit farther out than the diver above.

It is a male long-tailed duck, although long time birders may know it as an oldsquaw, a winter visitor to these parts who breeds in the Arctic. 

The second is the fanciest duck at the inlet and a major draw for photographers and birders alike. And as you could imagine it was a key target bird for us birder-photographers.

Harlequin ducks, female on the right left and more gaudily plumaged male, who's not quite in full breeding regalia, on the left right [thanks Wren!]. The nice thing about harlequins is that they like to hang out on the rocks of the jetty. And it is much easier to get a good photo of a bird on a rock than one bobbing on the waves. And it doesn't hurt that they are much closer either. These too are only winter visitors to our shore, breeding up north along fast moving streams. 

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