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Friday, March 20, 2015

Black and White Snow and Ice

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I know... we're tired of the snow and cold, but today's dreary weather made me think of some photos I had taken just a few weeks ago and never shared. 

If you remember, last year the frozen lake was beautiful and smooth as glass. Example:

This year, because of the multiple snows and melts, the lake, although frozen, didn't have that gorgeous shimmer of solid ice. Nevertheless, I did shoot a few images that captured the lake with all that snow on top of the ice. Here are a few of my favorites, below.

Under the Walkway, Woman's Garden

Favorite Tree, Woman's Garden 
Tracks, Beach 3

Melting Ice, Woman's Garden

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Piliated Woodpecker Pays a Visit

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I often hear him up in the treetops, but today, a Piliated Woodpecker came by to check out the delicacies in our feeder, down at the street level. I did a study of him in photographs, below. 

He's quite a large bird. According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology website, "the Pileated Woodpecker is one of the biggest, most striking forest birds on the continent. It’s nearly the size of a crow, black with bold white stripes down the neck and a flaming-red crest. Look (and listen) for Pileated Woodpeckers whacking at dead trees and fallen logs in search of their main prey, carpenter ants, leaving unique rectangular holes in the wood. The nest holes these birds make offer crucial shelter to many species including swifts, owls, ducks, bats, and pine martens."

Pileated Woodpeckers are quite vocal, typically making a high, clear, series of piping calls that lasts several seconds. The sound is quite similar to a Northern Flicker’s rattling call, although it tends to be more resonant and less even in tone, with changing emphasis or rhythm during the call. Pileated Woodpeckers also give shorter calls that sound like wuk, wukor cuk, cuk to indicate a territory boundary or to give an alarm. Listen to sound samples here: 

Here are the photos:

Saturday, March 14, 2015

All In The Family: Shayna's 17th Birthday

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It's a family affair: Shayna's 17th birthday with son/uncle Eli, daughter-in-law/aunt Nila, and grandson/cousin/son Jameson. Celebrated at Ziki Japanese Steakhouse.

Color work followed by candids in black and white of everyone, including our Japanese chef at work on the hibachi, making fried rice, noodles, hibachi chicken, beef, lobster and shrimp. Food was good! 

Happy Birthday, Shayna! 

Shayna at 17

Jameson and Shayna
Shayna, Jameson, Nila and Eli

Me with the family (photo by Ziki host)

Exhibiting at Lake Barcroft Art League Show: Come on Out

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The Lake Barcroft Art League is having a group show at the Crossroads Gallery at the Goodwin House Bailey's Crossroads, 3440 S. Jefferson St., Baileys Crossroads, VA, 22041. (703) 820-1488.  

Everyone is invited to the reception on Sunday, March 15, 3-5pm. I'll be showing three works, including this view of an oncoming storm on Beach 4. The show runs through April 19, 2015. 

Here is the flyer for the show. Hope to see you there!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Winter Melt; Sunny Day Birds

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With the temperature hitting 58 on Sunday, the big melt has begun and looks like it will continue through the week. I took advantage of the day and took a walk with the long lens. Here are today's observations: 

Beach 3 in a Water Drop
Mourning Dove
Signs of spring: New buds
There was a lot of commotion and flapping of wings at the top of the trees near the Beach 5 entrance, and looking up, I observed a starling and two red bellied woodpeckers. I couldn't tell who was harassing who, but I was only able to capture the starling.
European Starling 
Canada Geese over Potterton Bridge 
Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow
Song Sparrow
White-Throated Sparrow
Observed this flying object as well: a camera drone.