Monday, November 10, 2008

Drama in the Arb (or how to miss the National Geographic Picture of the Year)

Is is snowing today, so I just realized that Mr Winter is now back in Michigan for 5 long months, or more. 5 months of cold, snow, with only waterfowls and finches to warm the heart of the courageous birder.

As the whole world was focusing last Tuesday on the presidential election, the state of Michigan generously gave me a holiday, so I could have all the time in the world to vote. Not being a US citizen and being denied the right to vote, unfortunatly, this was an excellent opportunity to :

  1. Fix a plugged sink at home
  2. Go birding for a while in the Arb

Wait a minute, something is not right......with the light being so bright and beautifull, and quickly reprioritized my "to do" list:
  1. Go birding for a while in the Arb
  2. Fix a plugged sing

Being efficient is all about prioritizing, I was told once...

Entering the Arb through the prairie, as usuall, I quickly met a group of friendly Dark Eye Juncos. Two of these Juncos were particuliarly obvious and fairly cooperative. Using my binoculars and my camera, as usually I started to digibin the one on the right. Let's call it Nestor.

Mmm not good. For some reason, the autofocus is actually focusing on the grasses behind. Plus its head is in the shade......So I turned my attention to the one one the left (let's call it Robert)

Ahhh not bad at all. I mean considering my primitiv way of taking pictures, that's about the best I can do. Suddenly, I feel, I see a shade on my back, on my shoulder. A fraction of second later, I see a Cooper's Hawk flying 2 feet over my head. Another fraction of second later, Nestor was gone, caught by the raptor. Wow.

Well obviously I just missed the National Geographic Picture of the year.

Other birds for the day were all usuall, but the light was making birding particularly enjoyable.

White Throated Sparrow


Edge of the prairie

White Throated Sparrow

Eastern Bluebird

1 comment:

Jochen said...

Hi there, Laurent!
The "edge of the prairie2 pic is very beautiful.
Wish I was at the Arb!!!