Blue-eyed GrassBlue-eyed Grass – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/400, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 400mm, natural light

Last week I was Thinking Pink so this week I thought I would focus on the shades of blues found in wildflowers, birds, the sky and seas. Blue-eyed Grass (Sisyrinchium angustifolium) is one of my favorite blue wildflowers from the eastern United States. Blue-eyed Grass isn’t actually a grass at all, it is from the Iris family and may have gotten the “Grass” part of its name because the leaves are very thin and grass-like. I found and photographed this beauty under the pines of the Osprey Trail at Honeymoon Island State Park in Florida.

Great Blue Heron in the Gulf of Mexico

Great Blue Heron in the Gulf of Mexico – Nikon D200, handheld, f6.3, 1/1000, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 230mm, natural light

It seems to me that Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias) are misnamed because they are more gray than they are blue, in fact when I see a Great Blue Heron posted on line that is very blue I scratch my head because they really aren’t that blue. I photographed this Great Blue Heron as it walked along the shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico at Fort De Soto’s north beach in Florida.

Little Blue Heron stalking prey in a tidal lagoonLittle Blue Heron stalking prey in a tidal lagoon – Nikon D200, handheld, f7.1, 1/640, ISO 200, Nikkor 80-400mm VR at 360mm, natural light

Little Blue Heron (Egretta caerulea) adults are more blue than Great Blue Herons, at least from the base of the neck to their tails, their necks have a reddish cast to them. I was sitting in the lagoon with the Little Blue Heron approached me while it was stalking and hunting prey at Fort De Soto County Park in Florida.

Male Lazuli BuntingMale Lazuli Bunting – Nikon D200, f8, 1/500, ISO 250, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

Male Lazuli Buntings (Passerina amoena) have a gorgeous azure blue head as well as some blue on other parts of their bodies. The word “lazuli” come from the semi-precious gemstone Lapis Lazuli which comes in various shades of blue with gold colored specks. I photographed this Lazuli Bunting in the San Rafael area of Utah and the background is the color of sandstone found in that area.

Mountain BluebirdMountain Bluebird – Nikon D200, f6.3, 1/2500, ISO 500, -0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4 TC at 400mm, natural light

Mountain Bluebirds (Sialia currucoides) are one of the bluest bird species I have photographed, especially the males. I didn’t add any color saturation to this image at all, this is how blue the bird looked in the light conditions I had at the time I took this image at Red Rock lakes National Wildlife Refuge in Montana. The males during the breeding season are a rich, vibrant blue.

Blue skies at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, MontanaBlue skies at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, Montana – Nikon D200, handheld, f20, 1/160, ISO 400, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 18-200mm VR at 18mm, natural light

Some of the bluest skies I have ever seen have been at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in southwestern Montana where on a clear (or not so clear) day you can see for miles & miles. I loved how this wave of clouds fanned out in this frame and added a nice contrast to the blue tones in the sky.

Amazing blues of Magens Bay, Saint Thomas, USVIAmazing blues of Magens Bay, Saint Thomas, USVI – No techs, this is a panorama made from several images that were joined together

The colors of the seas and oceans have always drawn me to water because they can vary from the palest aquamarine to deep royal blues and everything in between. Magens Bay in Saint Thomas and the Atlantic Ocean beyond it give this image wonderful shades of blue that I find very soothing and it brings back nice memories of my stay on the island.

Shades of blue…