Category Archives: Migration

Black-throated Green Warbler – Photo of the Week

This weekend I finally got out for some bird photography – way behind schedule, but life’s been a bit crazy lately and well, as they say, better late than never.

I ended up photographing one of my favourite birds – a Black-throated Green Warbler. This little guy has set up shop on the same territory for 2 years. It’s nice to have him back.

Read about and view 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week by clicking on the thumbnail below.

26 May 2013


Filed under Digital Photography, Migration, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, Wildlife Photography

The Warblers Return – Photo of the Week

I’m late with the Photo of the Week – sorry! Spring is my busiest time of year. The warblers are back, the wildflowers are starting to bloom. Oh, so much to get out and photograph!

But here is this week’s Photo of the Week from 44th Parallel Photography – better late, than never. 🙂 This week’s photo is of one of our beautiful little warblers that pass by on their way up to the boreal forest. I love this time of year and in late winter every year, look forward to seeing the return of these beautiful little birds.

Click on the thumbnail below to view 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week

27 April 2013


Filed under Birds, Digital Photography, Migration, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, wildlife, Wildlife Photography

Returning – Photo of the Week

It’s been a busy time lately, but I finally got out with my camera. It was a great day to be out – the first time this year that it’s actually felt like spring. It lifted my spirits and I so enjoyed photographing the Red-winged Blackbirds and Common Grackles that have returned to the cattail marshes to duke it out for the best territories. Spring has returned. 🙂

Click on the thumbnail below to view and read about 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week.

13 April 2013

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Filed under Birds, Digital Photography, Migration, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, wildlife, Wildlife Photography

Signs of Spring – Photo of the Week

Finally, I’m back! Enjoying blog posts, social media posts and just generally do things photographic. Between getting over the flu, doing my InDesign II course, and a whole host of other things, it’s good to be back. I don’t like missing my regular blog posting. I feel disconnected. So I’m happy to post that I have a new Photo of the Week. This one is again on the theme of lamenting the lack of spring weather, but with a more optimistic tone. 🙂 This week’s post is about robins. Those tough little birds that usher in the change of the season, from winter to spring.

Click on the thumbnail below to read about 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week.

6 April 2013

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Filed under Birds, Digital Photography, Migration, Nature, nature photography, Photo of the Week, photography, wildlife, Wildlife Photography

Photo of the Week – Trumpter Swan at the Tagish River, Yukon

This past week I had the good fortune of making a whirlwind trip to the Yukon. I had a work meeting in Whitehorse for 2 days and tacked an additional 2 days onto the trip to tour around the Whitehorse area with a friend, taking photos. I was lucky to be there during the annual Celebration of Swans, a festival staged around the arrival of hundreds of Trumpeter and Tundra swans, which stop over on their journey back up north to their breeding territory.

Although the weather wasn’t great, keeping swan numbers low, it was still a fabulous experience to see and photograph these majestic birds in the wild. Click here to see 44th Parallel Photography’s Photo of the Week. And check back here again as I’ll be posting more images and stories about my Yukon adventure.


Filed under Birds, Migration, nature photography, Photo of the Week, Wildlife Photography

They’re baaaack!

Well, here it is, spring again. Red winged Blackbird season, as I call it. To me, these guys are the first sign that spring is actually here. Even though it might still be cold and dreary and we might have the odd snow shower, these birds still encourage me. They are the first (well, along with the Common Grackles) to set up territories amongst last years grey-brown, lifeless cattails and as a splash of colour and life. Go to any cattail marsh right now and it will be full of Red wings and Grackles squawking at each other, protesting each other’s presence, and trying to claim the best territory so they can attract a good female. It is a sign of spring, a right of passage and a very welcome sight after a long winter.

Life has been so busy lately that spring arrived and I haven’t even been out with my 600 mm lens photographing birds. That’s like cutting off my oxygen! I need air! 🙂 But my work travel is done, the exam is done for my online course, and finally, I have some time to get out. It’s the Easter long weekend this weekend and I plan to don rubber boots and camo and get out with the lens. I can’t wait!

I love the splash of colour these birds bring to the grey-brown of last years lifeless cattails. Spring has arrived! Get out the camera. Time to have some fun!

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Photo of the Week

Been super busy lately. My Dad had surgery and is in hospital so I’ve been focused on other things the past little while. And Christmas is coming. But I really hope to get back to posting regularly, aside from my Photo of the Week. So stay tuned…. In the meantime, click on the thumbnail below to see the Photo of the Week.

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Saying “See ya'” to our Songbirds

Like it or not, fall is in the air. This year we seem to be hanging on to the hot, muggy weather later than we used to, but today is grey and cool and feels more like a Labour Day weekend. This kind of weather causes me to have flashbacks to childhood where the Labour Day weekend was our last bit of freedom before school started back and yet we’d always be curled up in front of the tv watching the Jerry Lewis Muscular Distrophy telethon. Funny what you remember about childhood….

This Labour Day my thoughts turn to the changes we witness at this time of year –  the temperatures (usually) cool off, the winds pick up, bringing with them a certain chill in the air, and the Goldenrod and Purple Loosestrife flowers loose their vibrance as their blooms wither and are replaced by seeds. But soon, the fall-blooming mauve New England Asters will bloom, to provide us with the last burst of colour before the drabness of late fall settles in.

The first real sign of fall, for me, is the sight of the first trees who’s leaves have already begun to lose their vibrant chlorophyll-green colour and instead take on the hues of those warmer colours – the red, oranges and yellows of the dying leaves. This year, there is another sign that I have paid more attention to. I think it’s partly because we live out in the country and partly because this fall,  I’m more in tune with the environment around me, for a number of reasons.

For me, a definite sign of the approach of fall is signaled by our feathery friends. Birdlife around our place has been unusually quiet these past few weeks. I think it’s that fall came early. Not due to temperatures, but due to the drought we are experiencing. Around here, the forest is very, very dry. Most of our wetlands completely dried up this year. As a result, the forests and wetlands around here became eerily quiet far earlier than they normally would. I guess the animals are off looking for greener pastures, literally. So the other day, when I saw two young birds flying back and forth across our front lawn, swooping down to catch grasshoppers and other late summer insects, I took note. They were two of the few birds still hanging around. But these guys were new. They had just shown up. I got my binos out to take a look. To me, they looked like flycatchers, but I wasn’t sure which kind. They looked more brown than the species I thought they were. Luckily, these little guys seemed happy to play in our front yard, even with me out in it, so I grabbed my 600 mm lens and out I went.

A recently fledged Least Flycatcher

Waiting until one of them perched on a bare branch on a nearby tree, I crept up with my gear, inching closer for a better shot. Eventually, I got pretty close before they decided that was close enough and flew off. But I did get a few good shots. And from what I can tell, these are recently fledged Least Flycatchers. The identification guides I’ve read say that the jeuveniles tend to be brown above and a bit yellow on the tummy. Yup, that fits the bill. They were quite vocal so I listened carefully and then compared their song against those on my iPod. Yup, Least Flycatchers.

I love how scruffy this little guy looks. It’s like he only partially blow-dried his hair and still has a bit of that wet look going on. And you can see the outer wing covers, which still look small and dark, compared to the adults.

Despite the dearth of birds around our place, every few days a few new ones show up. Yesterday there was a pair of warblers flitting back and forth, from tree to tree, in the forest next to the house. It seemed to be a female Black-throated Green Warbler and a Black and White Warbler. The two flitted and hopped from branch to branch, together, in unison. One of the things that I’ve noticed, is that this time of year, you’ll see many more mixed species flocks. As they begin their journey south, different species tend to hang out together. It probably has to do with safety in numbers.

Black-throated Green Warbler

Black and White Warbler

So, the fall migration is clearly underway. It makes me a bit sad. And I wonder how I’ll survive the winter without the ton of opportunities that spring and summer present, for bird photography. I’m sure I’ll find days to go out and photograph the Bluejays, Nuthatches, Chickadees, and Juncos that frequent our feeders in winter. But it’s just not the same – not like spring where the air is alive with birdsong, to the point where it’s hard to isolate a song because there’s so much ‘chatter’ in the air. I’m actually one of the few people who seems to like cold, snowy winters. So I don’t mind winter. But I will miss the birds and the photo opportunities they present. I guess I’ll just have to make the effort to get out lots this winter, in search of owls.


Filed under Birds, Fall, Migration, Wildlife Photography