Tuesday, October 15, 2013

the wetlands through the insufficient lens of my iphone

lately the hubby and i have been trying to get a bit healthier and shed some extra pounds. we used to enjoy riding our beach cruisers around town, but they were stolen last year. (sad face) i had an older beach cruiser stored at my folks' house so we brought that home, but what fun is going beach cruising by yourself? "honey, i'm home. your turn to go ride the bike by yourself." i realize some people do like to ride solo, but we like to do things as a team for fun and encouragement. then, my hubby had the great idea of getting one of those stands to turn it into a stationary bike. it works great and we've been (almost) consistent with riding it. today, however, we just weren't feelin' it. i suggested we go for a walk instead. ok, where should we walk? our 2 favorite places are the wetlands and the beach. we were having trouble deciding (not an unusual occurrence in our house) and thought we'd flip for it. at the last second, i said, "wetlands!" i'm glad i did.

before we left i had a fleeting thought of taking my big camera, but decided, nah, it's heavy and bulky, my iphone should suffice. we started out on our trek and the first thing we saw was 5 turkey vultures. 1 was guarding and feasting on a corpse of some kind and the 4 others were watching and waiting. are you kidding me? we see turkey vultures all the time, but 5 of them? together? feasting? ugh. why didn't i bring my freakin' camera? i love how the one on the bottom is guarding it with his wings open like, "nothing to see here, move along." here is a crappy iphone shot of them

then, we turned around and saw about 20 brandt's cormorants sunning themselves on a log. we've seen them on the other side of the wetlands before, but not this close. crappy iphone picture #2

to the left of them were 2 beautiful american white pelicans on a little patch of earth. of course, pelicans are no rare site in huntington beach, but white pelicans? i only recall seeing one other one and that was while i was volunteering in the wildlife care center. crappy iphone picture #3

we continued walking and here's where not having the camera really hurt. we saw a super rare reddish egret. i know that's what he was because a couple of years ago we were walking along and some birders with one of those gigantic telephoto lenses (drool, want!) were kind enough to point him out to us and we got to see him do his goofy fishing dance. if you've never seen a reddish egret dance before, you should youtube it, it's pretty funny. we didn't get to see him do his dance this time, but he was standing near 2 great blue herons so we had a nice size and color comparison. he must stop by every year on his rogue migratory route. here is the wondrous bird in all his crappy iphone camera resolution glory.

and, just to add insult to injury, as we were leaving the wetlands, we saw an osprey (on the left) and a turkey vulture (on the right) sharing a tree branch. what? you've got to be kidding me! it's like the wildlife all said, "karen's coming without her camera, do some epic shit today!"

it was a beautiful day none-the-less. we got some good walking exercise in, saw some really beautiful creatures against gorgeous, bright blue water and a cloudless sky and i got to spend quality time in nature with my hubby. i really can't ask for any more than that.

and really, i have nothing against the iphone camera. i rarely take my big camera anywhere with me anymore because i can usually get a pretty good shot with the iphone. after all, it's not like i sell my photos or anything, i just like taking them for memories and to share with friends and family. today was just one of those times i really wish i had brought the big one.

here are some other shots of birds that were nice enough to be in a range better suited for the iphone camera capabilities. a snowy egret, a great blue heron and a great egret and great blue heron together.