CEE’S WHICH WAY CHALLENGE 2015 WEEK #33

Everyone should have figured out by now – I absolutely love photographing African animals!

For the which way challenge this week, a selection of animals blocking the way.

A group of male nyala block the winding way forward. Phinda Private Game Reserve, May 2015. 1/160sec, f8.0, ISO 4500
A group of male nyala block the winding way forward.
Phinda Private Game Reserve, May 2015.
1/160sec, f8.0, ISO 4500
A mom and three young cheetah cubs block the road (as does a zebra, farther off in the distance). Phinda Private Game, May 2015 1/250sec, f7.1, ISO 1000
A mom and three young cheetah cubs block the road (as does a zebra, farther off in the distance).
Phinda Private Game, May 2015
1/250sec, f7.1, ISO 1000
A crash of rhino at a bend in the road. Phinda Private Game Reserve, May 2015 1/320sec, f5.6, ISO 640
A crash of rhino at a bend in the road.
Phinda Private Game Reserve, May 2015
1/320sec, f5.6, ISO 640

CEE’S WHICH WAY CHALLENGE

Travel Theme: Mellow

I did a quick scan through my last batch of travel photos to find a few mellow shots to share.

I hope you enjoy!

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A leopard rests peacefully in a tree top near Baines Camp in the Okavango Delta. 1/800sec, f9.0 ISO 640
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A lion cub chills out as dusk descends on Phinda Private Game Reserve. 1/500sec, f5.6, ISO 1600
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A group of cheetah cubs take a rest on the road after a hard days play. 1/320sec, f5.6, ISO 1100
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Sunrise over the Sabi Sands. 1/320sec, f5.6, ISO320
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Sunset on the Timbavati, and the first star of the evening. 1/60sec, f4.5, ISO 500

Travel Theme: Mellow

Northern Lights and Proton Arc

The aurora forecast looked promising last night, so I decided to try and stay up and see if I could see anything.  I am surprised with how great the photos turned out, as frankly it wasn’t as vibrant to my eye as it was to the camera.  But, it wasn’t really dark yet either, at least at the start.

I didn’t know what it was until I saw it mentioned on some other people’s photos, but I captured a proton arc last night as well!

Most of the streaks through the photos are satellites, but there was one brilliant meteor that passed through as well.  Unfortunately, it rained yesterday afternoon and the evening was quite damp, and I ended up with some condensation on my lens on the later photos, which put halos around the brightest of the stars.

All in all though, I am really, really pleased I stayed up!  I hope you enjoy, have a great evening!

A beautiful display by mother nature! All photos 30sec, f3.5, ISO 2500. Taken with a Nikon D610 with the DX 10-24mm wide angle lens, using the cameras built in interval timer.
A beautiful display by mother nature! All photos 30sec, f3.5, ISO 2500. Taken with a Nikon D610 with the DX 10-24mm wide angle lens, using the cameras built in interval timer.

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The proton arc stretched out above. I had no idea what I was looking at!

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When the interval I has set was over, I swung the camera about 90 degrees to capture the proton arc crossing in front of the milky way.
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There are lots of satellite trails, but this one was definitely a meteor.

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The green along the tree line really shimmered and danced. It’s a shame the condensation caused those halos around the stars.

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Here’s a quick time lapse I did of the sequence of photos I took.  I think it does a nice job to show the beautiful movement in the sky.

Photo Challenge: Creepy

I guess truth be told, I don’t find the maribou stork creepy per se.  It’s more thinking back to kids stories about storks bringing home new babies.  I can only imagine a small child seeing one of these birds after hearing one of those tales, and then spending time being terrified about what might actually show up at home.

Whether they are really creepy or not, here are a few photos of maribou storks, creeping through the Okavango Delta in search of dinner.

Certainly not the most attractive bird I've ever seen (but I don't think the ugliest either).
Certainly not the most attractive bird I’ve ever seen (but I don’t think the ugliest either).
A group of caribou storks patrol the shallow waters of the Okavango Delta.
A group of caribou storks patrol the shallow waters of the Okavango Delta.
Creeping around in unison.
Creeping around in unison.

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One of the storks was successful on the hunt.
One of the storks was successful on the hunt.

The Daily Post – Creepy

Red-breasted Sapsucker

A new visitor stopped by the yard this morning!  I fired off quite a few shots from the porch, mostly so I could ID the bird, and then wandered closer.  He or she didn’t mind my presence, and continued working up and down a couple of birch trees, picking off tiny insects.  The red-breasted sapsuckers are a summertime visitor to my area, according to my bird app, so I am very grateful for the opportunity to view and photograph today.

I was glad I was able to move around the get the light in the right direction, and work towards an uncluttered background.
I was glad I was able to move around the get the light in the right direction, and work towards an uncluttered background.
I love the out of focus soft green background, it really shows off the red feathers,
I love the out of focus soft green background, it really shows off the red feathers,
A chance to see the wings spread out, and the hint of yellow tones on the belly. 1/1000sec, f6.3, ISO 640
A chance to see the wings spread out, and the hint of yellow tones on the belly.
1/1000sec, f6.3, ISO 640
Captured mid-blink.
Captured mid-blink.
Looking skywards.  I love the detail that I was able to capture.
Looking skywards. I love the detail that I was able to capture.
Reaching to grab at a tiny insect.
Reaching to grab at a tiny insect.

World Elephant Day

Anyone that has read more than a few of my blog posts knows that I love elephants.  I could spend an entire day happily watching them; scratch that, I’m pretty sure if I saw them every day for the rest of my life, I wouldn’t grow bored of being around them.  I find them fascinating, beautiful, amazing and peaceful creatures, and being in their presence, even just for a few moments, is a blessing.

Here’s just one of many, many photos I have, I hope you enjoy.

A breeding herd of elephants stops by the watering hole outside of the Chitwa Chitwa main lodge for an afternoon drink. 1/500sec, f11, ISO 1600
A breeding herd of elephants stops by the watering hole outside of the Chitwa Chitwa main lodge for an afternoon drink.
1/500sec, f11, ISO 1600

More night skies

I managed to get another evening in of night photography on the 11th (and then couldn’t manage to stay awake past 8:30 last night…)  I let me camera do its thing and was curled up under a blanket with a glass of wine, and consequently lost track of how many meteors I actually saw… it was a lovely evening though and here are a few photos I thought I would share.

Have a great evening!

3 meteors featured in this photo (all concentrated to the top right)
3 meteors featured in this photo (all concentrated to the top right)
2 meteors in this shot, again towards the top right.
2 meteors in this shot, again towards the top right.
3 in this one, 2 top right, one amongst the clouds
3 in this one, 2 top right, one amongst the clouds
I just caught the start of one here.
I just caught the start of one here.
The start of a meteor and also getting a glimpse of the milky way.  I should have adjusted my ISO by this point, but I was more interested in watching the sky and drinking my wine :)
The start of a meteor and also getting a glimpse of the milky way. I should have adjusted my ISO by this point, but I was more interested in watching the sky and drinking my wine 🙂

Night Skies

Yesterday, for the first time since I moved, I managed to stay awake to see the stars.  I’m sure that sounds a bit funny, but summer nights are long in southern Canada, and even longer now that I have moved quite a bit further north.  And this early bird does have trouble staying up past 10…

But, I managed last night and got my camera set up hoping to catch a bit of the meteor shower (I saw one, and captured a few faint trails before I called it a night).  What I was most impressed with though was the clouds.  The first shot in the photos I am posting was taken at 10:30, and the last at 10:59 (okay, I didn’t manage that far past 10).  The moon wasn’t up yet, and I live far from from city lights.  I didn’t do anything other than export the photos from lightroom, they were taken with auto white balance, and all at 30 seconds exposure, f3.5, ISO 1000 (with my focus set to infinity).

If you look really, really closely in the last two photos, you might see the faint evidence of a meteor.

I’m excited for playing around more with night photography.  I must say, it was fun to get set up on on my back deck with a couple beers and watch the sky for awhile and take a few photos.

Have a great evening everyone.  It’s pretty overcast here tonight so I’m going to give the late night shooting a miss – maybe tomorrow though 🙂

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Travel Theme: Grey

Here are my photo’s for the travel theme- grey.

A pair of grey go away birds perched at the top of a tree, in lovely early morning light. 1/400sec, f7.1, ISO 100
A pair of grey go away birds perched at the top of a tree, in lovely early morning light.
1/400sec, f7.1, ISO 100
A walk along the dikes on a typical January morning in Pitt Meadows. 1/50sec, f4.0, ISO 720
A walk along the dikes on a typical January morning in Pitt Meadows.
1/50sec, f4.0, ISO 720
My very favourite type of grey!  A group of elephants approach along the road at Phinda Game Reserve (we kept reversing to give them the room they needed). 1/640sec, f8.0, ISO 2800
My very favourite type of grey! A group of elephants approach along the road at Phinda Game Reserve (we kept reversing to give them the room they needed).
1/640sec, f8.0, ISO 2800

Where’s my backpack?