Black Skimmer on a September morningBlack Skimmer on a September morning – 2008

The first day of September signals to me that cooler weather is arriving so I took a look back at some of the images I have taken in September from 2008 on.

September 2008 in Florida meant that I was getting excited not just about the cooler weather but also the birds that spent the summer breeding further north were arriving on their wintering grounds or would soon make their appearance. The humidity would drop and the skies seemed clearer (most days).

Pronghorn buck in rut showing flehmen response to nearby doesPronghorn buck in rut showing flehmen response to nearby does – 2009

September in Montana means crisp, cool mornings, warm days and star-filled nights and it also meant seeing Pronghorn bucks on rut in Madison County. My first camping trip to Montana was a delight and staying at Cliff Lake made it even better in 2009.

Female Short-eared Owl on a foggy September morningFemale Short-eared Owl on a foggy September morning – 2010

Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in September means seeing the leaves high on the Centennial Mountains changing colors, mornings with a light frost on the ground and lake fog to start the day. In 2010 I spent 13 glorious minutes with this Short-eared Owl and developed memories of her that I hope never to forget.

Juvenile Chukar molting into adult plumageJuvenile Chukar molting into adult plumage – 2011

September on Antelope Island always makes me think of the word “golden”, golden grasses, golden light in the morning and the “golden” fleeting feeling of the last of summer days. In 2011 I photographed this hatch year Chukar and while it looks kind of ratty I know that this young Chukar is only molting into its first adult plumage.

Juvenile Red-tailed Perched on an outcropping of rocksJuvenile Red-tailed Perched on an outcropping of rocks – 2012

September used to be great on Antelope Island for juvenile Red-tailed Hawks too and I would find them quite often on the dark Farmington Complex rocks found near Frary Peak. This juvenile hung around the trail head parking area for several weeks in 2012. That year the vole population crashed and since then Red-tailed Hawks are hard to find on the island.

A juvenile Red-tailed Hawk perched on a boulder with red lichenA juvenile Red-tailed Hawk perched on a boulder with red lichen – 2013

Some Septembers in the Centennial Valley are a raptor lovers delight and in 2013 I was truly excited to finally photograph a Red-tailed Hawk on the reddish lichen covered boulders that I had dreamed about since the first time I went to the valley to camp.

A juvenile Swainson's Hawk calling out to be fedA juvenile Swainson’s Hawk calling out to be fed – 2014

And in September of 2014 I was able to photograph a juvenile Swainson’s Hawk close enough to do portraits of the young butterscotch colored bird. I was in a parked vehicle and the juvenile Swainson’s was perched across the dirt road on a fence post not paying attention to the camera at all just the adult in the distance.

Great Blue Heron and a large CarpGreat Blue Heron and a large Carp – 2015

And so far September of 2015 has come in very birdy too with a morning trip to Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge and a Great Blue Heron with a large carp that it seemed determined to swallow. It walked around the reeds and I didn’t see if it did indeed swallow the fish.

September… to be continued.

Yeah, life is good.


My post is later than normal today because I ran out of time to prepare it before heading out the door to Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. I am glad I waited so I could include a September bird from 2015!


  1. Deborah September 1, 2015 at 8:40 pm

    Gorgeous Septembers Mia. I especially LOVE the short eared owl and the GBH with that giant fish! WOW.
    And of course all the hawks. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Utahbooklover September 1, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    Wonderful images all. Yes, cooler weather and fewer hummingbirds at the feeder.

  3. Bob Mcpherson September 1, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Totally stunning images, Mia. The Owl is the “Most”. Best I have seen.

  4. Bob mcpherson September 1, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    Stunning images, Mia. Love the owl. Best I have seen.

  5. Elephant's Child September 1, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    Beautiful. As always.

  6. Roger Burnard September 1, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Another great series Mia. I can relate to a lot of the images that you show from Florida. My wife Carol, and I are “snow birds,” and have, for a number of years, made yearly driving trips from here at our home in Maple Valley, Washington, to our condo in Sarasota, Florida. Many of the sites that you visited
    in Florida are quite familiar to me, as are the “critters” you’ve photographed. I too use Nikon, and have since 1965. I am currently using a Nikon D4, a D810, a D7100, and a D7000, and rely heavily on a Nikon 70-200mm VR II, a Nikon 200-400mm f4.0, and a Nikon 800mm f5.6 VR for my wildlife photography. But I have to admit that I have been impressed with the quality of images that Ron produces with his Canon gear. I just got a Canon 7D Mark II, along with the 100-400mm f 4.5- f5.6 IS, along with the 1.4x III converter, and am extremely impressed with the image quality, even when I employ the converter. But enough of that… what I’m writing about is that I wanted to complement you again on the images that you get. It is obvious to me that you, and Ron are having lots of fun, and after all Mia, that is what this game is all about for most of us. My publishing days are behind me, and I choose not to get involved in that hassle anymore. Now I shoot for fun. Keep up the good work, and keep having fun. Take care, be safe, and stay well. ;-)))

  7. Cindy September 1, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    Yes, Mia, life is good. Thanks for your generous postings, photos. They are a reminder on how precious this earth is.

  8. Susan Stone September 1, 2015 at 12:01 pm

    The great blue with such a large carb reminds me of an experience we had at Dana Point, CA. Somebody had left the cover off the bait tank on their fishing boat and a great blue heron was gorging himself on the fish – so much so that we wondered if he’d be able to fly afterward. There was a snowy egret looking on, who seemed a bit upset that the heron wouldn’t share. That was back in 2008, and the memory still makes me smile.

Comments are closed.