Welcome to My Michigan (The Mitten)
I took a fifteen year break from photography to spend as much time as possible with my family. Now that the kids are out of school and I find myself with more free time I have decided to join the digital age and pick up where I left off.
For me photography is a labor of love. It helps me see everything in a new light and a new way. Everyday events become forever memories. Insects, flowers, animals and birds become magical and mystical. My eyes see a whole new world around me, sometimes alien but always beautiful. This is what I love to do, winter, spring, summer and fall, immersed in the great out of doors with a camera in my hand.
Come and join me on my expeditions. And just maybe, like many others, you will come away "Smitten by the Mitten".
Thank you for stopping by.
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Believe it or not a Pacific Loon visited Littlefield Lake in Mid Michigan just south west of Clair. It has moved on now but stayed around for a couple of weeks. What a treat!
Pacific Loon 1
Another day in Michigan comes to a beautiful end. This photo was taken at the Hammond Bay State Harbor in Presque Isle County.
Hammond Bay Harbor
This Virginia Rail wasn't sure it wanted to come out of hiding but it was curious enough to take just a wee little peak. The photo was taken in Presque Isle County.
Virginia Rail (painterly)
This warbler is called a Mourning Warbler because its dark hood is thought to resemble a mourning veil. They seem to prefer dense underbrush so it is difficult to get a good photograph of the whole bird. This is by far the best photo that I have been able to get of a Mourning Warbler. It was taken in Presque Isle County along the shores of Ocqueoc Lake.
It took me two plus years to to get a halfway decent photo of a White-eyed Vireo in Michigan. This photo was taken earlier this week when I was in Hillsdale County. It's not hard to imagine how this bird got its name.
White-eyed Vireo 2
This Black-capped Chickadee is busy picking out a bouquet for Mothers Day. The photo was taken in Legg Park.
Here is a Blue-winged Warbler that I saw in the Dansville State Game Area yesterday.
I have always wondered why a Common Yellowthroat wears a mask? What does he do when no one is watching him? This photo was taken at Lake Lansing Park North.
Last week we had a special guest visit out backyard. This is the first time a Red-Headed Woodpecker has stopped by to say hello and brighten up our days. He hung around for four days and then moved on. Wouldn't it be nice if he visits us every year as he travels to his home up north!
Red-headed Woodpecker 1
Red-headed Woodpecker 3
As a group, warblers are the most colorful birds to migrate through our area every spring and fall. They are also the most difficult to photograph since they are constantly moving in search of an insect meal. This is a Yellow-rumped Warbler, one of the first Warblers to arrive in the Spring. Many more, just as beautiful are close behind. Get out and about this weekend with your binoculars and try to get a look at some of the tiny birds moving in the treetops. Maybe you will get a glimpse of a Warbler "Gem". This photo was taken in Legg Park.
Yellow-rumped Warbler 2
I was at Lake Lansing last night wishing for something exciting to appear when seven Caspian Terns flew out of the fog and drizzle. Sometimes wishes do come true.
It was 8:30 when a birding friend called to say there were five American White Pelicans at Lake Lansing. I was already in the Jeep heading back from a walk in one of the Meridian Township Preserves so I just kept driving to Lake Lansing. It was almost dark by the time I got to the Lake and found the birds. Here are the best pics I could come up with. I imagine they will still be at the lake tomorrow morning so get up early, go see a really rare bird at Lake Lansing and then treat yourself to breakfast. What a great end to a very good day!
American White Pelican
American White Pelican
... but you can't see me. This Sandhill Crane is on a nest trying its best to blend into the marsh as I walk by. The photo was taken in the Meridian Township Foster-Crouse Preserve.
Sandhill Crane on Nest
It's not often that a bird like this drops by mid Michigan for a visit. Another birder discovered this Yellow-headed Blackbird at Maple River State Game Area today. As soon as I found out about it I jumped in the Jeep and headed out. This was my reward!
Yellow-headed Blackbird 2
Yellow-headed Blackbird 3