Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Free Admission

Saturday was very warm and much too humid to breathe so I spent little time outdoors. For just thirty minutes that afternoon I wanted to practice with my camera. The critters made my head spin.


A skink got away,


Koi mouths were heard suctioning for food,


a cottontail paused for a moment,


and a squirrel showed me how clever she is.




The bugs loved the hot humidity but I wasn’t too thrilled with it.

Hummingbirds chitted and hummed and a chipmunk investigated behind the waterfall.

Then there was silence.

Not a bird or critter in sight,


except for one, far away in an observation tower.



They've been away for a long time. Now returning for regular meals.


I found feather evidence later.

Glad I missed the action, in a way.

One less Mourning Dove, I’m a little sad to say.

Why do so many of us rush out to the mall just to browse or go to a movie theatre, waste gasoline, and never step outside to notice what goes on right under our noses? It's all free admission for crying out loud!
For those who are suffering from the effects from Hurricane Ike, I wish you normalcy real soon.


Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

You saw and heard more in your thirty minutes outside than most folks do May.
Love your pix,
love your words,
love your dear heart.

NCmountainwoman said...

Whenever she sees something that excites her, my daughter says, "Now that was worth the price of admission." So I'll pass that on to you, Mary. Every one of those photographs is worth the price of admission.

Heidi said...

Excellent post Mary! Imagine, all that going on in one's backyard.

Skinks are pretty... I kinda wish we had them here :)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Mary, your fish were obviously a little put out with you for not feeding them. What huge beasts they are. I bet they could eat that skink if they got a hold of it. Great pictures, I am so glad you stayed home to take pictures and post for us.

Anonymous said...

Well, with cool critters like these, I might even put up with the humidity! Great job, Mary - I esp love the big O of your koi's mouth.

Beth said...

Couple that nice camera with your talent and the pictures are incredible. You can see the individual little hairs on the squirrel and the bunny. Lovely pictures, nice to have a post from you.

Debbie said...

Sorry it has been so hot and humid for you. We are settling into our gloriously wonderful fall weather up here.

Your pictures are getting better and better with your new camera. Just terrific.

KGMom said...

Not only is it free--but it saves on GAS!
Love your inventive squirrel. My husband thought it looks like the squirrel is reading directions!

JeanMac said...

Great post - the photo of the 2 feathers was very touching.

Unknown said...

Ah Mary I hear you. I have gotten more joy and entertainment this summer and it was all free right in my back yard.

Great photos.

Jayne said...

I second what Lynne said. :c) I loved your little cottontail and your very intelligent feeder guest...lol.

Corey said...

We see life in much the same way.

SaraG said...

Great photo's. It is amazing what we can see and hear in our own backyards. I love to just go out and take photo's in my yard or just on a hike or a day on the boat!
Take care and keep up the great photography. Looks like you are LOVING your new camera!!

Susan Gets Native said...

I loved this series of photos, Mary!
The squirrel must be taking a break from mother-duty...see the hair worn away from her teats? Poor thing, trying to raise the next generation of Feeder Raiders.

Suck on, KOI!

Kerri Farley said...

Oh I so agree with you! I can't tell you how long it's been since I've seen a movie at the theatre.

Your shots are amazing once again! sorry about the dove :(

Peg Silloway said...

A visit here is worth hours anywhere inside. Today's photos are especially rich - the koi, the squirrel, the feathers that tell the tale. Thank you, as always, for a much needed dose of what really matters.

TR Ryan said...

Hey, can you send your little friend my way. I have got an overabundance of ring-necked doves and starlings that would make perfect carry-out!

Q said...

Dear Mary,
The mall? Where is that?
Although I do like your mall pond with all the wonderful herons!
You and your camera have bonded! Look at that mouth on the Koi! My goodness, I do think it is the best fish photo you have ever taken. Good equipment is nice but you have to have the eye and you have it.
I too love the movie in the backyard. It is always worth a bowl of popcorn.

Ramblings of a Villas Girl said...

Hi Mary! Beautiful pictures. I love the Koi picture the best. Isn't it eerie when you go outside and hear the silence. Cooper's are beautiful birds, but I don't want to witness the actual feed. I agree. Cheap or free is for me. Lisa

PJ said...

You are soooooooo correct in this. don't you just love tails?

BJ said...

Mary - I definitely favor the koi picture! I can't believe how BIG they are! My gosh.....you have been feeding them something mighty good!

All of the pictures were so enjoyable. Thanks for sharing them with us.

Julie Zickefoose said...

Koi cracked me up. Loved the bad lil' squirrelt. I think that might be a rock pigeon that met its end by the Cooper's talons. Just a guess, based on a gut feeling about the width of some of the feathers.

Can't stop chimping.Forgive me? Glad you're wrestling the new camera to the ground.

Chet is murrfing at me. He is telling me he wants Chicken Tikka Masala for dinner instead of Cesar over Royal Canin. I have created a monster!
What's a Mether to do?

RuthieJ said...

Wow Mare, those are some great shots after only 30 minutes in the backyard! Your squirrel is too cute--hard to deny her those peanuts when you know she's got a family to take care of!

Treehugger said...

Omigosh! You are doing some amazing things with that new camera! Those images are just breathtaking! And, you are so right! We so often miss the beauty that is right under our noses...gives us so much to be grateful for! Thanx so much for sharing the views from your window to the world!

beckie said...

We are so lucky to have free admission to your site! Always glorious photos and endearing commentary. Such a treat to be able to visit. Thanks, Mary!

Kathie Brown said...

Mary, what a nice bunch of nature shots. I laughed when I saw the hawk. We had one on our birding transect Tuesday and we were wondering why we weren't seeing many birds eihter, until we saw the hawk. As for the mourning dove, so far we have no shortage of them, so, everyone has to eat. Glad he got his belly full.