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Dreary Days

I don't know what our luck can be described as, but at the very least, it provides for lots of hearty laughter. It has almost become a typical evening, I leave home with the intention of soaking up some gorgeous golden light, then the clouds descend upon us like it's some sort of practical joke. Anyway, originally we had planned to visit a forest, but with the um, different prevailing lighting conditions, we changed our course and decided to head for somewhere open. Knowing that Dickcissels were in abundance in Caroni, we headed there. I mean, if the light is bad, then it's best that you go to a place...

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Monday Blues

First of all, I'd like to extend my deepest condolences to all those who are suffering from an acute case of Monday Blues. Hang in there! I've spoken about Egrets some days ago, and today I'd like to share with you a few images I made of some of their close relatives. Similar in size, structure and even behaviour at times, our medium sized herons are generally common around waterways in T&T. Elegant as always, Little Blue Herons are often confused with their cousins prior to adulthood - their juvenile plumage is all white. What a drastic change huh? This one fluffed its feathers as it was walking...

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Jewel in the Darkness

Thick forest is often profitable in terms of biodiversity - the only drawback from a photography standpoint is the level of available light. Light does not always reach the understory where most of one's subjects will actually be considered "eye level", but that does not stem the flow of enthusiasm in the slightest. A few days ago, we stopped by Arena forest for two hours - a blip of course - we didn't expect to see much in such a short time. As anticipated, we heard lots more than we saw - that's the excitement, hearing a call and desperately trying to track it down. From Boat-billed Flycatchers...

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Chasing a Few Thousand Birds

Even though I had seen Dickcissels on numerous occasions before, there is nothing quite like experiencing tens of thousands of birds dipping, swirling and chattering incessantly to one another. These migratory birds visit the open marshes of Trinidad now and then, it's definitely not an annual occasion. Some years we get none, others just a few, and some years - like this migratory season - we have probably around fifty thousand visitors. During the daytime, the birds generally fan out over a broad area, searching for feeding grounds across the country. It is in the afternoon, as the sun starts...

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Live Life With No Regrets. Only Egrets.

The fear of the unknown has been a great motivator for all sorts of varied endeavours in the past, and I do believe it still continues as we speak. Some folks recoil from the thought, others capitalize on it. Either way, I won't class it as something that is completely deserving of the dread it seems to garner. How much do we know about today? After all, we can only truly know what is going on at this very second, and even that in itself is a mere perception. So who are we to class something so similar as something so different? While the topic of today's blog post is in essence, a joke - it still...

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First Light

Recently I've had a Pied Water Tyrant pose for me daintily in the rain, waving a delicate silken flag in the gentle breeze. Well, I thought that my luck couldn't improve any more with this bird. But mornings are magical. As the sun gradually warms the air, all the diurnal creatures decide to stretch, yawn and prepare for another day alive. It's always a pleasure to be able to share this moment with our fellow inhabitants of this planet - to be a witness to their lives is a blessing in itself. It's what I try to do with my photography; providing as many people as possible with the opportunity...

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Lessons in Cultivation

When I first got into photographing birds, I knew little of the theoretical aspect of it - the unspoken communication that is stored within the borders of the frame. For me, a photo was a photo, and hey, if it looked appealing enough at the time, then I was satisfied and it was time to move on. As the years passed, I learned more and more - not by being overtly taught - but by becoming a viewer myself. I started squeezing images (both mine and others) for information, for feeling, for atmosphere. Many of us are somewhat blinded by the novelty of being able to see things differently through the camera,...

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Birding Hacienda Jacana: Jan/Feb

We spent a night at the unbelievably picturesque Hacienda Jacana a couple weeks ago, with the intention of a proper birding mission - originally intended as a three day stay, but you know, life happens sometimes and we ended up halving the time. Even then, having to attend to several commitments earlier in the day ensured that we arrived on the premises late in the afternoon. Nevertheless, the trees were rife with action as we pulled up, with numerous pairs of Rufous-tailed Jacamars calling fervently. Pictured here is a (white throated) male, calling to his russet coloured mate a few branches away....

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A Big Wet Steups

For those unfamiliar with Trinbagonian parlance, a "big wet steups" is an emphatic expression of disapproval, frustration or disgust. Or pretty much anything in-between. On a recent mission, a gorgeous male Silver-beaked Tanager flew in close, so close that I could see his eyes from where I sat. Low light, no problem. I slowed my shutter to 1/30th of a second to get that rich red colour. A little flash to bring out the detail on the water droplets. Only one very small and completely insignificant issue.             He stayed right in that location...

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Oh, Hummingbirds!

It's completely understandable why this particular group of birds has captivated the eyes, minds and hearts of people ever since they were discovered. Even though scientists had been observing birds for centuries, it was only when the Atlantic was crossed word started to spread about these tiny jewels that could be insects, but probably might actually be birds. They are of every conceivable colour, and even some in-between. And one bird can flash different colours at will. Although I can't say that hummingbirds are my absolute favourite family, but they are definitely fun and easy to photograph....

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