Return to Daniel Webster

Mr. Majestic seemed to have life on the Grist Mill Pond well in hand so after observing for a while I decided to squeeze in a visit to one more place, Daniel Webster Wildlife Sanctuary.

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Many of you may remember that this is one of my favorite places to go to look for birds and wildlife to photograph. It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost a year since I’ve been back there. My last trip left me covered in deer ticks and then I got busy with “staged” photography for my cards. Well I don’t have my Deet with me but I’m only going to go sit in the blind for a while and see if anything is going on.

The parking lot was full when I arrived. Not surprising since it’s Sunday but I did feel my heart drop. Usually lots of walkers means less animal activity but I’m here so I’m going to check it out.

At the blind another photographer was watching the panne flats. I asked him if there was anything happening. His response, “Not unless you like Canada Geese”. Shortly after I set up he gave up and left. I settled in for a wait but it didn’t take long for things to pick up. Mama & Papa Canada Geese were giving their 5 goslings swimming lessons.

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Into the water they went, swam in a small circle and then out to the shore again. This routine went on every 10 minutes or so, never venturing too far out.

Turtles were hauling out to sun themselves on every rock and log in sight, even climbing on each other.

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Then I spotted another bird that I’ve only seen once before…a glossy ibis.

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I must have spent an hour watching this beautiful bird forage in the shallows. He/she had rich mahogany body feathers with darker wings.

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When the sun hit just right his feathers glistened with an  iridescent rainbow of colors.

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He wasn’t making it easy to get pictures. He was either behind the reeds or way out in the middle.

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I had a 300-500 telephoto lens on the camera but it was still a reach. The pictures are better than my first try last year but I wish he had come closer or I had a bigger lens.

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To paraphrase the line from Jaws “I think we need a bigger boat”….I think I need a bigger lens!

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