I went to Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge a few days ago to
feed the mosquitoes photograph birds and saw my photographer friends Sterling Sanders and Larry Muench at the refuge too so we had a nice chat before heading out around the auto tour route. I also finally met a long time friend from Nature Photographers Network face to face, Neil Rossmiller and his wife Connie who live here in Utah, and we also had a nice chat.
I have said this before but I think it warrants saying again… I meet the nicest, most interesting and fascinating people because of my
addiction passion for bird photography. Some I only know via online communications so it is terrific when we can finally met face to face.
I wasn’t disappointed in the light the other day, the sky was clear and the temps were very comfortable. I also wasn’t disappointed in the number and variety of birds I saw including plenty of shorebirds, waterfowl, grebes, pelicans, sparrows, blackbirds, wrens, terns, gulls, cormorants and so much more. I even saw my first Great-tailed Grackle ever at the refuge being chased by some Red-winged Blackbirds.
The Black-necked Stilts are making their presence known with all of their yipping calls. I missed hearing them during the winter and I am savoring hearing them now at the refuge.
I saw a stilt acting as if it was already on eggs and took just a few images of it because most of the stilt was obstructed by grasses in front of it which will probably be good to help hide the nest location. Then I took a series of images of this male Black-necked Stilt foraging in some very shallow water that showed the red of his eyes and those long, long legs. Although I wish I had been closer to the stilt I always appreciate being able to take images from further away that shows the habitat my subject is found in. I’m almost certain that later in the season I’ll be able to obtain images where the stilts are closer.
Not too long after this image was taken; and when I felt I had donated enough blood to the mosquitoes, it was time to head home. If I lived closer to Bear River MBR I would probably be there every day to watch and photograph the birds, scenery and wildlife there throughout every season. I still try to get there as often as I can. The refuge and all the marshes that surround the Great Salt Lake are a national treasure.
Life is good.
The 18th Annual Great Salt Lake Bird Festival is May 12-16, 2016. For all the visitors coming to the festival be sure to take a trip out to Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. You won’t be disappointed!