May 16, 2006

For the birds

I'm trying to get caught up. I have what the Norwegians call a "luxury problem": One of those problems that isn't really a problem; it's insignificant and often a result of abundance. Mine is having so much material for blog posts, that I a) can't choose, and b) can't find the time. I found a common theme for a couple of items, so here you go:

Shooting birds

My new camera has a 12x zoom and I wanted that so I could take bird pictures. I'm not sure if it's the camera or the camera settings, but this picture of a fieldfare (in Norwegian, "gray thrush") shows some artifacts around the bird. The picture itself is good, though. I was walking around Ortuvann (the pond near where I live), and was mostly focused on the birds on the ground. Then I got the impulse to look up, and looked straight at:

I took several shots of this bird and then noticed two more just like it in another tree. Those two seemed to be having a dispute; I'm assuming over territory. One would fan its tail feathers, and the other kept its distance. Eventually, all three birds decided to fly off and argue in another tree farther away.

The Ministry of Silly Walks

Commercial break

I love creative ideas, and fell for the clever concept of advertising birdfeed by attracting real birds to the billboard with the product itself.


Recently, an oystercatcher couple built a nest on the roof of one our university's buildings. There's a webcam and a live video feed. What you can't see is that as of this writing, the weather's pretty unpleasant again: Almost freezing at night. Momma bird (I assume it's Mom) pretty much just sits there, occassionally stretching her neck or shifting her head. Sometimes she checks the eggs or turns around (I don't know yet when she eats). Via the live cam I got a glimpse of the eggs today, and they are very pretty: White with gray squiggly markings. But what gets me watching the live video instead of the webcam, is her breathing. Sometimes the only movement I can see is her breathing, steadily, three times faster than my own resting rhythm. And there is something so meditative, so calming about watching her. It never occurred to me before just how patient a bird incubating its eggs must be.


alice said...

Your bird photo is wonderful! I love your zoom!

(BTW, Happy Constitution Day!!!!!!!!!)

Keera said...

I love my zoom, too. It's exactly what I wanted.