Wednesday, January 6, 2010

More blasts from the past, and (probably) a spark bird

The scanning game continues, about 150 today.  I think however that my estimate of 10,000 was conservative...  Thinking it's probably more like 12-15 thousand.  Sigh!

Oh well, it's fun going through them, especially the photos of spring and summer!

I don't actually remember this moment, but I marked the photo as being "hwy Bdn to Wpg", so this was either a side road along the Trans Canada, or I had no idea!  Taken in September of 2004.

See that clump of grass in the middle?  A few seconds after I took this shot, a big brown thing appeared, then hightailed it outta there - a moose!!  This picture was taken from the little turn-in right after the welcome sign at Hecla-Grindstone.  We saw our first moose within minutes of entering the park!  Must have used up all of our luck though - been back several times and have never seen another.  Photo taken May of 2005.

This may be my spark bird.  Just maybe.  A "spark bird" is the bird that makes you want to quit looking at birds, and become a birder.  This picture was taken September of 2004.  Pictured is a very lost female Harlequin Duck.  My poor old camera just wasn't made for bird photography!  This was the first bird we "twitched" (not sure if it counts as twitching if it's in your own city) after hearing about it on the Manitobabirds list. 

It was an educational experience.  How great to see the bird we came to see!  But it appeared lethargic, and seemed awkward on land.  We expressed these thoughts to a few of the birders present, and got no response.  None.  Later on the list, somebody commented on its tameness, to which I responded that it appeared "under the weather".  No response.  A later email updated us - the bird had been taken in by Zoo staff, and died later.  How odd, that a good experience for us came about due to this poor bird's own misfortune.  Some other time maybe, we shall wax poetic and philosophize over such issues. 

In the meantime, here is another photo taken at beautiful Hecla, also in May of 2005, during the same trip as the previous photo.

(Click to enlarge)

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