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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Bounding through the Baylands

A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to spend a couple days with my very best friend who I haven't seen in two and a half years.  Since she and I (and our husbands and children) are tremendous geeks, and proudly so, we knew a trip to the Baylands Nature Preserve in Palo Alto, California, would be perfect for our families.  Although we didn't get to see the Golden Eagles and Burrowing Owls we'd hoped we would, we still got a nice show.  I don't have much to say other than we'd be there every week if we lived there.  I will share some of my pictures.  The trip completely rekindled my love of birding that I'd abandoned in high school.  If you are in the area, be sure to stop by and give yourself a couple of hours, at least, to explore.

Red-Tailed Hawk
Needs no words
Gorgeous White Pelicans preening and stretching
and fishing
Before we made the drive to Palo Alto, we spent a few days in the San Diego area.  Even though my obsession with birding had not yet been rekindled, my love of photographing nature was alive and kicking (wow, that's a lot of metaphors), and I got a couple of shots of birds I don't see every day, if ever.

These first two are a Brandt's Cormorant that was diving and resurfacing so much and so fast that I had a hard time getting a good closeup, but it did stop to rest on a buoy.
If you've never seen a pelican up close, you don't realize how big they really are.  The Brown Pelican has a wingspan of over six feet.  This one made the loudest splashes every time it landed!
At first glance, thanks to the light, this Rough-legged Hawk appeared to be a Golden Eagle.  Another birder, who drew my attention to it in the first place, thought so, too.  Even though I was slightly disappointed to find out it wasn't when I blew up the picture, I was still excited to find out I saw a bird I've never seen before.
P.S. I gave picture captions a good test today (I normally just type them manually under the picture), so let me know what you think of the format.


  1. Hey, I know that place...! :) I LOVE the stretching pelican pic.

    I like the caption format--it seems cleaner to me.

  2. I just don't like the bright white frames that are different widths for each photo.