T in Texas

Been a tough week in Peoria – apparently the plague is making its rounds through the area.  A lot of people have been hit with it at work and now it’s made its way to my household – Linda has been pretty ill the last couple of days.  Not a doctor,  but at this point looks to be some kind of stomach attacking flu (yuck!).  Anyway, trying to keep my distance so I do not fall prey to it.  I can’t afford to lose any training time at the moment with the April half marathon quickly approaching.  While I tend to Linda, figured I’d pop out another post.

Once again digging into the November 2013 Texas birding trip grab bag, I bring you this intriguing bird…
Texas Birding Trip November 2013
Apparently our subject likes to look at himself in the large glass of The Beast.  Strutting its stuff for the camera – “I’m too sexy for my orange legs, too sexy for this beach, and I’m too sexy for my feathers”.  You can thank me later for embedding that song in your head for the rest of the post and likely the rest of the week.
Texas Birding Trip November 2013

Hit the jump to see what this bird is  (although you probably already know!)

This cute little bird with the flashy legs is a Ruddy Turnstone.  It took me awhile to finally convince myself of the ID, but the bright orange legs, the deep feather pattern and the black collar were good indicators.  I am just used to seeing them in their breeding plumage which is even more defined and stunning.  You can see that plumage from the first time the Ruddy was featured on the blog (link here).  Quite a dramatic difference.

Texas Birding Trip November 2013
My brother Ron helped confirm the ID so I’m pretty comfortable with making the official post.  If it turns out wrong we can always blame him hehehe.  So, how do you like these pictures… compared to maybe the first set I took?  The reason I ask is this particular shoot tried to take a different perspective – a much lower perspective than I usually have an opportunity to give you.  I definitely like (and agree with just about every bird photography bird I’ve ever read) the bird’s eye viewpoint is more visually appealing.  Guessing I was trying to keep the glass out of the sand or I would have gone even lower – next time I might go ahead and risk it based on how well these turned out.
Texas Birding Trip November 2013
You can also tell I took them at a variety of angles relative to the sun.  Some at 90 degrees to the sun, others at angles less and some at more.  You can really tell the different feels that it produces.  Take for example the shot above.  It was taken at a greater than 90 degree angle causing the light to fall on the backside resulting in darker more subdued feel.  Now contrast that with the first couple that were taken at less than 90 degrees.  Those have a nice spot light feel to them as the light shines directly off the bird. Think I like the first couple better than the latter, but all in all really like the complete set.
Texas Birding Trip November 2013

Always trying to learn in the field and sets like these give me opportunities to do just that.  Also helpful if you can tell me what you like or do not like about the different angle choices.  It’s always better, of course, when you have a subject that is displaying interesting behavior or poses like this one was – pretty darn cute!  wait.. not cute.   seeeexxxxxyyyyy sing it with me “I’m too sexy for my orange legs, too sexy for this beach, and I’m too sexy for my feathers, I’m a beach bird, you know what I mean, and I do my little turn on the sand, yeah on the sand, on the sand, yeah I shake my little tail feathers on the sand”  Oh yeah, that is embedded in your head now and the only way you are going to get it out of your head is to sing it out loud so everyone can hear it – come on … you can do it …. louuuuder.. louuder.  Pretty sure it is the new Soft Kitty jingle sure to haunt you for the rest of your days.

Have a good one everyone and stay away from that flu bug – nasty stuff.



2 thoughts on “T in Texas”

  1. Umm, are you sure you don’t have a touch of fever yourself? 🙂 Nice jingles, but how about lyrics that jive with “Do ya think I’m sexy?” or “She got (orange) legs!”

    Nice off-season shots of a Ruddy Turnstone! A nice-looking bird even then. I’ve learned to take pics at all kinds of solar angles–sometimes backlighting, for example, looks great! And I try to get low, too. Just a little low makes an unusual shot, and I’ve lain on a trail more than once to get as low as possible, especially for snakes. Little harmless snakes.

    Anyway, now I’m humming ZZ Top so I gotta go.

    Thanks for the pics!



  2. I am hoping you realize that was a real song although putting Right Said Fred in the category of song writers may be a huge stretch hehehhe.

    Here goes…
    If you want to shoot my body and you think I’m blog worthy
    Come on birder let me know.
    If you really need a +1 just zoom out and shoot me
    Come on birder tell me so
    Tell me so birder

    Okay, I’m crying foul here. For everyone reading this that thinks my brother actually lays down on a trail during the summer you haven’t been birding with him – he may talk a big game with regards to snakes (although I have witnessed him get pretty close to a couple of them), but he is deathly afraid of … wait for it .. tiny itsy bitsy TICKS! In fact, he is usually encouraging me to be the first one down any trail that has tall grass on it so I can draw the ticks out before he passes through. I laugh at this knowing that ticks don’t come from the grass, they jump down from trees and 9 times out of 10 they misjudge the first prey and wind up hitting the second person in the party. Shhhh, don’t tell him this secret or he will wise up and take the lead next time.

    I’ll leave the story about the blood curdling scream that came out of him when a Pheasant startled him hehehehe (although I must give him credit – he risked life and limb to get a Moorhen for us so I can’t be too hard on him)


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