maandag 11 maart 2019

Cranes (Grus grus!) at Lac du Der, France

Every year, in the months of February and March, impressive groups of cranes fly all the way from Spain to Scandinavia. They use the summertime to breed there and fly back in October and November.
They have fixed places on their route to rest and forage on land and shallow water.  
Cranes are omnivores and eat mainly waste grains, berries and insects.

A fortnight ago we went to the “Région Champagne-Ardenne” where these magnificent birds usually take a rest en feed themselves. Especially the “Lac du Der” is the place to be. We were lucky that the weather was very beautiful for the time of year: bright and clear and not very cold, some 15° C. and most importantly, we saw thousands of cranes!!

As you can see in my pictures we could admire them in all sorts of situations: flying in formations, landing, foraging, quite close, far away, in the morning  and at sunset.  
We look back in wonder and gratitude!!

vrijdag 21 december 2018

Australia! From Brisbane to Melbourne

Never thought it would come this far, but in October 2018 we flew from Holland to the other side of the world, hoping that this great effort would bring something really worthwhile for the biologist and the nature loving photographer.
And so it did! It was a beautiful adventure, five weeks full of nice observations. Marsupials, reptiles and birds we’d never seen before, bird sounds we’d never heard before and lovely spring fragrances.

It was most amazing to look straight into the eyes of another (not human ;-) being (> 6 feet!), but this happened several times! First there were these enormous kangaroos, quite relaxed, but curious to know who we might be; then the Australian pelicans, also man’s high.  A week or so later we were even more surprised to meet these beautiful tall emus. They too were very relaxed and friendly and seem to say: “Have we met before?” We’ll never forget this beautiful and special encounter. 
I’m glad my Coolpix did it’s work, as you can see ;-)

By the way, it was not at all easy to make a (limited!) choice from all the pictures I made and cherish. As you can see, living beings and birds in particular, represent, together with some wood structures and water vistas, the most special moments of our fantastic time in Australia. I hope with this blog to share with you some of our experiences and the neverending beauty of nature!

First Kangaroo encounter!
Collared Kingfisher (Todiramphus chloris)
Water monitor (Varanus salvator)
Grey goshawk (Accipiter novaehollandiae)
Stony creek Tresle Bridge Victoria
Superb and Variegated Fairy-wrens (Malurus)
Red-bellied black snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus)
Rainbow bee-eater (Merops ornatus)
Sulphur-crested cockatoo (Cacatua galerita)­
Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus)

Eastern water dragon (Physignathus lesueurii)
Urunga, Bellinger river
Laughing Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae)
View from Great Ocean road
Australian pelican (Pelecanus conspicillatus)
Jelly fish at Shark bay, Evans head
Silver seagull, Eastern whip bird, Brown cuckoo dove, Crested pigeon, Sooty oystercatcher
Rainbow in fountain at Roma Parkland, Brisbane
Merino sheep (Ovis aries) in SE Australia, Giffard
Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae)
Thickets at Tura Head NSW
Koalas at Towerhill, Warrnambool, VIC