THE 7-DAY BLACK & WHITE CHALLENGE – DAY 7

Judy Dykstra-Brown at “Lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown” roped me into this, but I have to admit, I’m enjoying it.  If you want to take this challenge, it’s a good one. Finding a black & white picture that somehow represents “you” is an interesting challenge. Just a hint of the existential?


“Seven days. Seven black and white photos of your life.
No people. No explanation. Challenge someone new each day.”


 

If you might be interested in being challenged, let me know. If you like black & white photography, this might be a good one for you. Actually, this is such a good challenge, I think everyone who does black and white or other monochrome at all should give it a try. It is easy, but picking one photo at a time, preferably one that has some relationship to your life — however obliquely — is interesting.

IN GOLDEN LIGHT #WRITEPHOTO

THURSDAY PHOTO PROMPT


November.

Just when we think the gold of autumn is fading, the sun sets the world on fire.

Reflections of bronze leaves  glow golden as sunlight skims the water.

Wild birds floating on a river of fire.

Reflection and refraction are transformation, summer’s final bonfire.

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BIRDS: A PHOTO A WEEK CHALLENGE

A Photo a Week Challenge: Birds

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We have some wonderful bird life around here. Winter and summer, we have waterfowl in abundance, garden and song birds, woodpeckers, hummingbirds.72-Geese_19

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I can’t always catch them in a photograph. Some move too fast. Others, I hear but never quite see. Those that graciously move slowly or stand still for me … they make it into my files.

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carolina wren

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November ducks Mallards dam blackstone

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WHICH WAY BY WATER

Cee’s Which Way Photo Challenge: 2014 #23

Welcome everyone to Cee’s Which Way Challenge. This challenge subject is all about capturing the roads, walks, trails, rails, we move from one place to another on. You can walk on them, climb them, drive them, ride them, as long as the way is visible. Any angle of a bridge is acceptable and are any signs.

I thought, since we live by the Blackstone River and canal, this week I might show you the waterways … canals and river and some of their bridges.

WATER BIRDS AT LACKEY DAM

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I haven’t seen any swans around here at all in months. The local ponds, rivers, waterfalls were all  dry, with their muddy bottoms showing.

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Kaity tells me she’s seen a lot of swans, but not in the usual places. I assume they went to deeper water. Before the rain started in October, you could walk across Whitin’s Pond.

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The ponds are full again. Full of water, full of ducks. I’ve never seen so many ducks. And today, down by Lackey Dam, one swan … and a lot of ducks. The leaves around the pond are dark red to bronze and so, by reflection, is the water.

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A fine day for waterfowl.

TERRIFIC TUESDAY TRIALS – ALL ALIKE?

Preeti Kanwar at LenzExperiments has started a new challenge, Terrific Tuesday Trials. This week’s theme is “all alike” so, having a few spare pictures around, I thought I’d come out and play with the other kids.


You almost always see swans in pairs. Swans mate for life, so where you see one, the other is rarely far behind.

And of course, when there are babies, you’ll see the whole family, in formation like a proud armada on the pond.

CONFLICT AND CONCLUSION – THE BATTLE AT WHITINS POND

Oct 2012 - Swans

This was swan territory. Many geese live nearby on other ponds and along the banks of the many rivers and streams of the Blackstone River watershed. But this pond belonged to the swans and the swans and the geese, like the rival gangs in a turf war, don’t share.

The geese scouts are already in place, unbeknownst (apparently) to the swans.

Geese scouts watching

Swans will happily share their nesting grounds with ducks and divers. Herons pose a serious threat to smaller fowl (all fowl are smaller) because they will eat the eggs and (if they can get them) the young of ducks, geese and swans until the babies are big enough to defend themselves.

Herons are more solitary and like loons, build nests in places hard to find by people or and other birds.

Swan's Nest

This spring, the geese came to the pond. In an expansionist move that broke all previous treaties, they moved in and actually took over a nest belonging the a pair of lordly and bad-tempered swans. It was war. We were there when the geese conducted a surprise raid on the swans.

First assault on the nest

First, the geese surrounded the nest and infiltrated. Geese are faster, organized and more mobile than swans. Swans are bigger, heavier and hold grudges. Geese can take off and land easily from almost anywhere, land or water. Swans need a long running start across flat water to get airborne. They are virtually helpless on land, bodies so heavy they can barely waddle. They are disorganized. Swans aren’t good rank and file soldiers, but they compensate with long memories and seriously bad attitudes.

The geese surrounded the nest while one of the two swans was away. The timing was good for the geese. With only one swan to defend against the attack, the lone swan was out-flanked.

Swan defends

The battle continued while papa swan paddles back to the nest. But he’s taking far too long.

Battle rages Swans V Geese

Battle Rage Swans V Geese

The odds are not with the swan, alone, defending her turf. Where’s her partner? Paddling like mad, but he was on the far side of the pond … and will not be back in time.

So what happened? We came back. There were no sign of geese, but the swans were still there. They must have rebuilt a nest elsewhere, because there were more than the usual number of cygnets.

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Feeding happily, sharing space with Mama Duck and her ducklings.

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Taking the family for a stroll while papa duck keeps watch o’er the ramparts. No geese here!

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The kids venture out on their own. They are now big enough to defend themselves and are likely to survive to maturity. It’s not, mind you, that I have anything against the geese. But they have taken over the majority of ponds and lakes in the valley. There are far fewer sites where swans breed. If they can’t share space — and clearly, they can’t — than I’d prefer this place for swans and ducks.

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