Blog

Good News, Everyone!

Futurama reference aside, I'm happy to announce that I'm finally taking orders for my 2018 calendar. 2017 has been a great year for me and I've had many memorable missions during our last revolution around the sun (sorry, flat earthers). During this year I've shared most, if not all of my best images with you - and for that I am eternally grateful. Thank you for giving this blog a glance now and then, a slight nod of approval, a share on social media - whatever it may be, I am deeply appreciative. All of the images on the 2018 calendar are from this year - fresh and never printed before. All of them...

Read more...

Testament to Tardiness

Sometimes when I get a little time to organize my life, I try my best. When it comes to the blog, if I have a backlog of images I tend to sort them into loose blog posts, which means that I toss pictures I'd like to publish together into a haphazardly named folder. They are all sorted chronologically, so I would know what's next and what's been covered already. In this case, the images for this blog article were in a folder entitled "migrants from the south". Now I'll give you some context. T&T, being a tropical country, is afforded the luxury of enjoying migratory species from both northern...

Read more...

Front or Back Lit? (Yet Again)

I spent some time with a couple Snowy Egrets some weeks (months?) ago. The sun was just getting low in the sky, but the light was still very strong. I was sitting on a road that ran north-south with ponds on either side; each pond had its own Snowy Egret stalking. The beauty was that one was strongly front-lit, and the other strongly back-lit. With the bright sun, I was able to finally use a fast shutter speed to freeze the action. First priority was the front-lit bird.                   I then continued, using the exact...

Read more...

Parasitic

Some of you may have realized the increasing level of infrequency these posts have managed to rack up over the past few weeks. As they say, sometimes life gets in the way? At least in my case it's all been enjoyable, and even though I haven't been writing much here, I still penned a couple articles for the Tobago Newsday within the last month - one on shorebirds (my loves) and the other on Frigatebirds (my first loves, adapted from an article I first posted here) - so the engine is still relatively warm. And since I managed to land my paws on a new phone that has the memory capacity to run Instagram,...

Read more...

Birding Hacienda Jacana: September/October

The most recent count that took place at Hacienda Jacana just slid in under the door as October drew to a close. With all the flooding that went on in October, we almost didn't make it. But with a little faith and a lot of desire to be immersed in the forest, we made the journey into the heart of the island for yet another installment of this series. The timing of our arrival couldn't have been  more perfect. Once we unpacked our stuff, I followed my inner voice that was directing me to a copse of tall trees just beyond the cottages. Somehow I knew exactly where to look; my eyes fell very swiftly...

Read more...

Birds That Don’t Have to Try Hard Ep III: White-tailed Sabrewing

For the third and final installment of this mini-series (I really like doing this) I have, naturally, saved the best for last. Well, perhaps not the absolute best, but my definite favourite. Regular readers and avid followers would know by now I have a tremendous soft spot for the White-tailed Sabrewing. One of our largest hummingbirds, it's found only in the rainforests of Main Ridge, Tobago. It was nearly wiped clean from the island by Hurricane Flora in 1963, but populations have since rebounded and can be seen with a certain degree of regularity throughout the forest. Sometimes one doesn't...

Read more...

Birds That Don’t Have to Try Hard Ep II: Black-throated Mango

I made a few images of a few Black-throated Mango hummingbirds some time ago, and they all fit the bill of effortlessly magical. The afternoon sun shone its golden light, and all was well. Then there was a slight drizzle, and all was suddenly much better. After that came the mad dash to find a suitable subject. If a backlit subject wasn't enough, a backlit subject in rain was to die for. Well, perhaps not literally. Maybe to be slightly inconvenienced for, dying seems a bit much for this circumstance. Fortunately, here was this Black-throated Mango, perched not too high up on a dry tree...

Read more...

Birds That Don’t Have to Try Hard Ep I: Assorted

There is a family of birds that is appealing to everyone just by their plain existence. Well, maybe not everyone. I once heard a story of a woman who was deathly afraid of them. Can't understand why. They are the reason why thousands of people visit the neotropics each year. They are the inspiration behind countless costumes, logos, mottos and scientific experiments. They are a complete marvel of biomechanical engineering, they are Hummingbirds. For the next couple blog posts, I will share with you some of the images I've made over the last couple of months of these tiny bodies full of energy...

Read more...

My Loves

I have a real soft spot for underappreciated birds, in case you haven't realized by now. Far too often birders can border on disrespect for many of the species that we've grown accustomed to growing up here in T&T. Sure enough, it's infuriating when that hint of movement that you detected in your peripheral vision that preceded twenty minutes of tracking a silhouette in the treetops only to realize it's just a bloody Bananaquit - but it has its own part to play in the functionality of our unique eco-system. Admittedly I have hurled my fair share of obscenities at an odd-looking Spectacled...

Read more...

Responsibility

I photographed this little family of Pied Water-Tyrants some months ago, and have been meaning to write a piece on the supposedly onerous task of raising a family in these trying times. But apart from wondering if I'd been reading too much into my subject's lives (I tend to do that a lot) - I figured I'd present it as it is, and leave any further discussion up to the discretion of the viewer. As any point I'd like to raise enters the realm of politics (politricks) - something I'd much rather avoid at this time. We've seen young birds before, and know that they're constantly on the lookout for the next...

Read more...