Sunday, November 9, 2008

South Texas Birds (Alex Mody)

Hey everybody,

I've now made it down to the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas, and am photographing birds and wildlife out here. This area definitely has the greatest biodiversity of anywhere I've ever visited. I see something new every day. I anticipate being able to put together a longer and more thoughtful post in the next few days, but I don't have enough time for that right now.

Here are two photographs I made at John and Audrey Martin's "Javelina Ranch." They are very kind and generous people who have made my stay down here much better than I had expected.

This first photograph is a Plain Chachalaca, which the locals call a "Mexican Pheasant." They're very interesting and noisy birds, and I felt fortunate to have photographed them perching up on branches, as they usually remain low in the brush.

This second shot is of a Sharp-Shinned Hawk. It came in and landed on this perch that I had set up just outside of a photo blind on the Javelina Ranch. It stayed on this branch for all of 10 seconds before moving on to another. I almost didn't get to make this shot. My autofocus worked just in the nick of time. I suspect the hawk came in to the feeder setup looking to grab a snack, but all of the songbirds were long gone by the time he landed.