Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Now for the good images


When last I left you I was being overrun by hungry birds. A few of them might even have been angry birds, but I don’t like to judge.

The new camera did a fabulous job, notice the detail in the feathers!

As I moved further into the woods I noticed I was being followed by lots of little birds. So I stopped again to see who was hungry. Naturally the titmice dropped down immediately.

We have lift-off!

And the chickadees, who were very noisy about waiting for their treats.

“I’m so excited I dropped my peanut!”

But most intriguing was a female red bellied woodpecker who was watching me while keeping some space between the feeding frenzy and her perch high in a tree. Yet…the longer I fed the little ones the closer she got. She’d move to a different tree and then feign indifference as she checked out her new position for any stray bugs. Then she’d move closer.

I decided to ignore her, turned my back and kept feeding the busy little birds. And suddenly …

I wasn’t sure I could trust you, lady, but I’m really hungry.

She watched me for a bit, both of us seemingly holding our breath. Then she picked out her breakfast treat.

You can make this and any image larger by clicking on it. Check out how beautiful her eyes are.

She went up to a nearby tree to eat her peanut, but she was right back for more.

“This peanut looks good.”

Each time she visited my hand she flew off with her prize to enjoy just feet away.

Displaying her red belly and her amazing wingspan.

She came down a total of three times, and I felt like we were becoming best friends. She chased all the little birds away each time she arrived. After her third trip I tossed some seed on the ground for her or anyone else and I moved along.

The little birds were grateful. The blue jays were jubilant, they’d been screaming about being left out for several minutes.

“Than goodness she’s gone! I thought I’d never get anything else to eat!”

I kept playing with the settings on my camera, intent on catching the wing of the birds as they landed and took off again. Each time I fidled with the camera birds became impatient.

“Hey lady, you know little woodpeckers are pretty cool too!”

The blue jays followed me for quite awhile, picking up the leftovers.

They’re pretty, but man they can be noisy!

And a male red bellied woodpecker followed me too. He wanted to come down for a treat. He’d get close, but couldn’t quite make himself do it. My shoulders ached from holding one hand out with seed, and the other hand holding the heavy camera ready just in case

Little stinker would wait until I moved along, then come in for the leftovers.

I guess he figured I wouldn’t leave him out, and I didn’t. I always left him a couple peanuts on the trail.

Least you think I wasn’t paying attention to things other than birds, I assure you there were plenty of pretty things without wings.

I don’t know what these seeds were from, but I thought they were pretty cool.

It’s just that every time I concentrated on something else, every time I rested my tired shoulder and lowered my seed filled hand, someone would fly around my head in protest.

Double incoming!

The day had started out cold and very windy, but as I wandered in the woods the sun broke through, and I warmed up. Trapising up and down hills while being pursued by birds warmed me up too.

A little chickadee ready for takeoff.

I thought about sitting on a bench for awhile, just take it all in.

Morning light on one of my favorite benches.

But there were more and more people wandering in the woods, and I had plenty of pictures to share. Plus, I’d been there a couple hours longer than the original few minutes I had planned on.

Sunshine makes everything art.

So I headed back toward the car…past the crane parking lot greeters who were now wandering down the path. They were much less interested in me than they had been when I arrived, when they almost mugged me for something to eat.

A crain and her shadow.

The sun was out now, the sky a brilliant blue. Part of me wanted to stay, but my shoulders and back ached. And since I had forgotten to eat breakfast before I left home, I was starving too.

It was turning into a beautiful day!

I didn’t think the birds were going to give me anything to eat, so it was time to go. I had a wonderful time even if it wasn’t anything at all like what I had come to find.

That’s the cool thing about this park. No matter what you plan, no matter what actually happens, it’s always going to be beautiful.

Love the heart on her head.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

44 thoughts on “Now for the good images

  1. How in the world were you taking these photos? Tripod and hand-held release? They’re splendid.


  2. Shoreacres, I know the feeling!


  3. These photos are incredible! You are going to have to figure out ways to work smarter, not harder. For example, maybe you could sit on a bench and use the back to support your feeding hand.
    Again, those photos are incredible!


  4. Dawn–WOW. These are fantastic. The wings of those birds, the nut in midair, the double incoming…!!! I have so much to try with my camera. I am keeping it in Aperture Mode, though!


  5. Love the Chickadee wing! And the Crane heart!!


  6. The new camera is certainly sharper with the action shots. Those are simply amazing. I think National Geographic will be calling you soon. Please tell me you’re submitting photos to their contests.


  7. I’ve never seen anything like it Dawn. You,ve got the magic… and sore arms too, I’m sure! Just incredible! But that’s what you are…💖


  8. What a day! Worth missing breakfast for. That red heart on the crane is beautiful.


  9. Really great close-ups, Dawn! And what a fun experience to hold out food and see who shows up!


  10. Oh these photos are superb!! WOWZA 😀


  11. Dawn, these are amazing!! That new camera captures so many details, and I love seeing these birds up close. Their wings and tiny feet are beautiful. No wonder your arms were sore, though, after trying to focus and shoot with one hand while feeding with the other!


  12. Look at that chickadee ready for takeoff–amazing shot! Your photography skills are getting better all the time! And that woodpecker–wa hoo! Good job, Dawn.


    • I’ve listened to quite a few photo classes, one that was really casual at a local bird feed store helped a lot in that I asked what the shutter speed was on one of his photos and he said 1/2000….and that lit a lightbulb in my head. So at Kensington this week I moved settings up to the point I had at least 1/2000 shutter speed, and that helped me apture these wing movements.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Keep sharing!! Absolutely BEAUTIFUL photos! We don’t have parks with all those beautiful birds near here where I live. I think I need to buy a camera. I keep saying that and haven’t, but proof is in your amazing photos!! The woodpecker and her wings span, the detail amazing. I zoomed in as you suggested looking at each photo. Thanks again for sharing! 💜🧡❤️💜


  14. These pictures are fantastic!! It is amazing to me that they actually land on your hand to grab some goodies. Excellent!


  15. Those are marvelous photographs, Dawn. I am amazed that a woodpecker would eat from your hand! And the sandhill crane is so beautiful.


    • This is only the second trip out there that a red bellied has come in like that. Last spring I was off the main trail, trying to stay away from people and a male came in and ate out of my hand. That was a first. This time it was early in the morning, no one else around, cold and windy and all the birds were desperate for something to eat. I don’t know if she would have come down otherwise.


  16. Fun!! Our birds are too well fed…other people must feed those birds too…or maybe they have you pegged for good seed treats!


    • Yes, lots of other people feed them, but there are lots of birds, and acres and acres of area, plus I was out there early on a cold morning and they hadn’t been feed by anyone yet that day.


  17. Dawn, Beautiful birds and you’ve go some amazing photos of them there. Thanks for sharing.


  18. Wow, you can take great pictures even one handed.


  19. I love the pictures and the fact you did hand feeding. I need to try that and see who might show up. What an adventure.


  20. Wow wow WOW! These are amazing, Dawn. How wonderful that the birds trust you enough to come to you. 🙂


  21. These are truly amazing. I am jealous that you have birds that will eat from your hand!


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