Nancy Merrill has chosen birds as the subject for this week’s Photo A Week Challenge and many of you will know that the only way I’ll take a picture of a bird is either from a safe distance or from behind a window or similar barrier. My life-long fear of birds has kept me at a distance from these beautiful creatures but it doesn’t mean that I don’t appreciate them or enjoy capturing the occasional image. However, these birds were definitely not in a mood to be trifled with.
One angry bird! This swan did not appreciate an over-inquisitive visitor to the Chicago Botanic Garden getting too close to its young ones.
Never get between a hawk and its dinner. This angry bird evidently didn’t welcome anyone else getting near the plat du jour.
This bird, at Brookfield Zoo, was decidedly cheesed-off about something. It kept marching up and down and making a lot of noise and I, for one, wasn’t about to get in its way.
Also at Brookfield Zoo, this eagle obviously considered it an invasion of his privacy when I used the long lens to get some candid shots.
Perfect timing! The subject for Jennifer’s One Word Photo Challenge this week is heron. Traveling down to Indianapolis for our grandson’s wedding last week, we stopped at Lake Dalecarlia for a couple of days and were greeted by a heron that visited the family’s boat dock every morning and evening. It followed the same pattern each day, landing on one side of the boathouse and strolling around to the other side to take off again. For more on Jennifer Nichole Wells One Word Photo Challenge go to This Week’s Challenges: July 9 – 15 (OWPC & WW)
This week’s Photo Challenge, set for us by Ben Huberman at The Daily Post, is Heritage. One thing that we all share in common, no matter whether we are young, old, rich or poor, is the living world around us. It is largely up to us to determine how we pass that heritage on to the next generation. All these wonderful gifts of nature will only thrive if we continue to take good care them but sadly it seems there is an irresponsible element that puts money and big business before the well-being of the environment. We can only hope that wiser heads will prevail.
The Heritage Garden at the Chicago Botanic Garden, dedicated to Carolus Linnaeus who established binomial nomenclature as the recognized method of naming plants, is modeled after Europe’s first botanical garden in Padua, Italy.
At the center of the garden is a fountain surrounded by raised flower beds that contain medicinal plants from around the world.
A gentle flow of water cascades over shallow steps that lead to three aquatic pools containing water lilies, lotus and other water plants.
Circling the perimeter of the garden seven flower beds display plants according to their geographic origin while fourteen addition beds are used to display plants grouped according to scientific classification.
These pictures were taken over a period of years and at different times of the year, additional displays in the Heritage Garden changing according to the season.
For more on the Weekly Photo Challenge go to https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/heritage/
Because of ongoing health problems I missed seeing some of my most favorite things this spring including the daffodils at Morton Arboretum, tulips at Cantigny, spring blossoms at the Chicago Botanic Gardens and the lilacs in Lombard. However, the flowers in our garden provided some consolation. They seem to manage pretty well without too much help from me and hopefully I can get out there before the weeds take over. We’ve had a lot of rain recently and when the sun finally did put in an appearance I managed to get a few shots of some familiar faces.
A colorful display of tulips and some mud-spattered daffodils as well as a few other springtime flowers helped to brighten the day.
A white-crowned sparrow and my arch-nemesis the rabbit also paid us a visit.
I must apologize for not keeping up with all the blogs that I normally follow recently, owing to the fact that I’ve been unwell for the past couple of weeks, so much so that we had to cancel a family get-together at Easter and a trip to Utah to visit our youngest daughter and her husband (something we had been eagerly anticipating) all of which has left me feeling rather ‘down in the dumps.’ However, it did give me the opportunity to sit for many hours looking out of the window and apparently I’m not the only one missing in action. I’m sure someone must have been looking for this zebra finch which evidently had escaped from somewhere. As far as I know it’s not native to the Chicago area or even America.
I also spotted another bird which, to the best of my knowledge, hasn’t visited us before. I think it’s a nuthatch but perhaps someone could confirm that or correctly identify it. I hope to get back to reading all your posts soon and catching up with the latest news. Best wishes to all.
I really had to go out on a limb for Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge this week. Keeping to my chosen theme, animals, bugs and birds, I struggled to find anything in the photo files that started with the letters I or J especially the letter I, so I hope you will pardon me if I have jumped to any conclusions in identifying the following. Hopefully, anyone more knowledgeable about bird and animal species can correct me.
Could this be a glossy ibis? I captured the image many years ago in an avian sanctuary at Cypress Gardens in Florida. Unfortunately the b/w treatment has taken away all distinguishing colors but the original picture shows that the bird was grey with an iridescent sheen to the feathers. There was also a red strip on the upper part of the bill. If you have followed my blog for any amount of time you will be wondering why I was in a cage full of birds. Despite my life-long fear of our feathered friends, the opportunity to get some close-up shots of so many beautiful creatures prompted me, in a moment of insanity, to plunge in, so to speak. My husband accompanied me (someone had to be there to carry me out if I fainted!) and we crept around trying not to disturb the inhabitants. I was terrified!!! I only managed to take a few shots before my courage completely deserted me and had to be led out with my eyes shut.
The animals pictured above are, I’m fairly sure, Siberian ibex. This was a shot that I took on slide film many, many years ago at Brookfield Zoo when they had a high, rocky enclosure know as IbexIsland. It was demolished in 2008 to make room for the new bear exhibit. I don’t know what happened to the ibex.
Jellyfish, pictured at the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago.
A junco and blue jay in our garden. These shots were taken with a long lens from the safety of our living-room window.
The letters for Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge this week are G or H and, keeping to my chosen theme of nature and more specifically animals, bugs and the like, I didn’t have too hard a time coming up with the goods.
The patterns on this giraffe make for great camouflage among the leaves at Brookfield Zoo.
Despite being stripped of his brilliant color by the b/w treatment of this image, a greedy goldfinch in our garden still makes a good subject for the letter G.
A giant grasshopper; at least it appears that way thanks to this close encounter at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
A hopeful hen looking for food and a handsome horse waiting to do a little light work at the Volkening Heritage Farm in Spring Valley Nature Center, Schaumburg.
A hungry hawk making short work of a hapless sparrow.
This picture of a huge hippo was taken back in the day when Brookfield Zoo still kept a number of large mammals. Somehow the whole zoo-going experience just hasn’t been the same without these giants.