Sunday, August 12, 2007

To The Skies

I took a drive this morning that found me south and east of Chestermere with a coffee in hand and a gaggle of radios tuned to various far off stations that included medium wave, shortwave, and a couple of fellow hams in Florida on 20 meters. On occasion I would pick up the mike and make a contact. I know I have mentioned my interest in all things radio before, however if you are curious take a look.

I had pulled over to get a shot of a field full of sunflowers when this Swainson's Hawk decided that he could do without me in is territory. Talk about a whole lot of foul words from his mouth. He also did a few fly bys while I leaned over the hood of my truck shooting photos of sunflowers.

The hawk finally gave up on trying to get me to move on and landed in this tree top nearby, where he continued to make a whole lot of noise. I started to walk towards him and after getting to close for his comfort, he launched off of this tree, giving me only this departing shot as he flew to a nearby field of bales just out of camera range where he continued to complain.

Canon EOS 20D with EF 300mm @ f8 - 1/750 - ISO 400

I was standing there looking at the departing Swainson's Hawk when this Franklin's Gull came withing camera range, probably wondering what all the commotion was about. This small black headed gull is very common on the prairies where they may be seen near the various wetlands, or following farm machinery looking for exposed worms, insects and mice.

There's something that has me pulling over whenever I see a field of sunflowers. At this time of the year I always plan on a drive out towards Bow Island to check out the fields of sunflowers. This is also the home of "Spitz Sunflowers." Spitz what? -Surely you jest. This is a favorite of every camper in every campground. "Spitz Sunflowers" has a very large sunflower processing plant located in Bow Island. Check it out sometime and at this time of the year they give tours with sunflower tasting.

If you saw my "Dragonfly Summer" post you are aware that I had been shooting photos of Dragonflies on the fly. Well I could not pass up this guy as he landed near me today, as I stood in a roadside ditch checking out the sunflowers. I must say that I was surprised as I had tried to capture a photo of a dragonfly at rest when it seemed impossible. Today I cared less and who shows up-Go figure. Later.

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