Posts Tagged ‘Riparian Preserve’

for Six Word Saturday 10.3.20

How about a little dose of cuteness to get your Friday off to a good start or to make it better if you’re already part way through?

At the Preserve, I’m both a photo and bird novice, drifting along among the die-hard birders with elephant-trunk-length lenses, camp stools attached to some of their persons, and an encyclopedic knowledge of what bird they’re seeing. The other day I came upon a group raptly gazing into the brush, looking at something I couldn’t even find. Reminded me of Yellowstone, where a group of stopped vehicles either means an accident or an animal sighting. Anyhoo…

During a recent visit, I took a few minutes to sit on a bench overlooking one of the smaller ponds and spotted what I thought might be a type of cormorant, as it was a prodigious diver. When I perused the internet, I found that it was in fact a pied-billed grebe. (If you’re trying to identify a bird, I highly recommend The Cornell Lab’s All About Birds site. I’ve had more luck with identifying birds there than wildflowers on most wildflower sites.) So without further ado, I offer you three various shots (two are edits) of the pied-billed grebe.

The original with all the lovely ripples and colors…

An edit with just the circular ripples…

A close-up of the grebe with only the most immediate ripples…

He’s kind of cute, isn’t he? Thanks for stopping by and I hope your week’s off to a great start.

This week’s Lens-Artists Challenge might have you seeing double. Although most things aren’t truly symmetrical, many are so close that you can’t tell the difference or you feel that you’re seeing symmetry.

When I think of symmetry, the William Blake poem springs immediately to mind:

Tyger Tyger, burning bright, 
In the forests of the night; 
What immortal hand or eye, 
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

Fortunately for you, there’s nothing fearful about the symmetry I’m sharing today. The snowy egret in this first shot is almost dancing on the water and with the water’s smooth cooperation, it’s almost perfectly symmetrical.

“Symmetry is what we see at a glance; based on the fact that there is no reason for any difference…”
― Blaise Pascal, Pensées

Here’s another almost symmetrical shot from the Riverwalk in Naperville, Illinois.

Although this photo is less symmetrically perfect than the previous ones, there’s still a pleasing almost-symmetry about it and it feels balanced.


for Lens-Artists Challenge #115: inspiration

It’s cooled down a bit, making an early morning walk in the Preserve much more enjoyable. Of course, “cool” is a relative term in Arizona. Let’s just say it’s been below 80F at 6 am in the morning. But where there are trees and water, even if the latter is reclaimed, there’s more coolness in the air and people and animals are out and about.

“Diversity” is the “in” term now and the Preserve’s got it as this photo of a great blue heron (GBH to Sylvia) and a great egret, both preening away, getting primped for the photographers, shows. The GBH nickname amuses me because in many of the British police procedurals I read, that stands for “Grievous Bodily Harm.” I imagine the fish in the area might go for that meaning.

Look in the background, there at the bottom of the reeds. Sneaking around behind the larger, flashier birds is a juvenile night heron.

Gamboling about looking for food is a Gambel quail. There are lots of these ground dwellers around but you’ll also see them in trees and bushes. The babies are adorable, but even when small, they can all run like crazy.

For many, birds are the main attraction here, although this guy (?) night beg to differ. I did look up how to figure out what sex a turtle is, but it’s not easy even if you can get up close and handle the turtle, which certainly isn’t happening here! Too bad it’s not a snapping turtle or I could use one of my husband’s favorite turtle lines: “Turtle soup, waiter, and make it snappy!”


Morning at the Preserve…three views

Posted: September 3, 2020 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Usually there aren’t any clouds in the sky in Arizona but when there are, they not only provide a bit of shade but the opportunity for a spectacular sunrise (or sunset if you’re at the other end of the day.) A few days ago at the Preserve, this one stunned me, the perfect way to start a day, so I share it with you.