When I was much younger, we watched movies with Cowboys and Indians, and that sort; and we were fascinated by weapons such as arrows (and bows), blow darts and spears. Something about them made you associate the primitiveness and the simple basic but deadly form with skill, rather than the crude but equally deadly firearms.
Reading stories and watching films that included “poisoned darts” was fascinating and intriguing, and it also made you wonder where the poison came from, was it man-made or natural?
One of Guyana’s major tourist attractions is the Kaieteur Falls, situated in the Kaieteur National Park, in this area, there lives a species of the Poison Dart Frogs, Colostethus beebei, it is commonly referred to as the Kaieteur Golden Frog. It is a tiny frog, of a brilliant golden yellow, that lives in the watery areas in the giant bromeliad leaves that are popular around the waterfall.
This frog produces a toxin that (dependent on the dosage) can kill small insects up to larger arthropods, I do know that they tell you NOT to touch the frog, it’s skin secretes the poison, only it’s feet have no poison glands.
On my first visit to Kaieteur in 2009, I was fortunate to see a few of them, and to get a fairly decent shot of one… not great, but decent 🙂
Humankind has relied on various methods to awaken them throughout the ages, as in to awaken them in the morning for the new day.
From the bright rays of the newly risen sun on your face, to the crow of the rooster, from that great invention; the alarm clock, to the thump from an angry wife who wants the garbage taken out, from the gentle sounds of the animals in nature, to the roar of early morning traffic (if you wake that late), from the shouts of a mother “You’re late for school!” to the electronic beeps of new messages on your cell-phone, maybe even something like the much exalted smell of fresh coffee in the morning, there have been things to awaken you.
My phone has an annoying alarm that certainly wakes my wife, and eventually myself, but nothing can compare to the sound of a regular visitor we have to our area. For years he (or one of his family members, at any rate) has come during the first minutes of the brightening day to begin his rat-a-tat outside my home and continue for what seems like hours (ok, maybe one hour). A Pilleated Woodpecker who lives somewhere in the vicinity, chooses the utility post in front of my house to sharpen his beak every morning, and he doesn’t only peck at the wood, he pecks upon the galvanised metal protector that runs up the post too! He actually seems to prefer that!
So what did I do about it? One morning I took out my Canon and shot him… several times… at least until I was fairly certain that at least one of the shots would produce a good photo 🙂
Click on the image to see it in the gallery along with other Sunrise and Sunset images.
No animals were hurt during the writing of this blog nor in any of the events leading up to it. 🙂
Although the week is yet to be concluded, I thought it may be prudent to go ahead and post what I have, although I have high hopes of getting more photos before the week is over 🙂
This is not a sharp photograph, the main subject is definitely not sharp but the overall image is very representative.
I had packed away my long telephoto lens for my flight (only 270mm, not long by bird watching standards), I didn’t want to carry too much in the Camera bag, and on my way to work I saw this fellow, and all I had was the Sigma 17-50, so I decided that an all-inclusive shot had to work. I saw him on a fence and when I stopped and got out of the car, he flew up the road to the next block, as I drove up, he sat there, so I wound down the window to get a few shots off, by the time I had done that he flew off again, so what I took (hastily) is what I got.
As I downloaded the image and began processing, I knew that this would be my photo for the Deck Project this week, I titled it “Ready to Fly”.
Whether or not I am actually ready, the flight leaves, so by the time I get to the airport I’d better be Ready to Fly 🙂
For me it will be a joy to see family I’ve never met, and family I haven’t seen in years, it will be an opportunity to look at an island I’ve seen before, but with a different perspective, and a camera in hand 🙂
So, for those I’m leaving behind, I say “see you shortly, I’ll be back before you know it” 🙂 And to the people and places I’m going to I say, “Ready or not, here I come”… and I want my Jammy Pattie!!!
Not sure if clicking on the image to see it in the Gallery would make it look any better, but go ahead, give it a try 🙂
In my youth, which sometimes seems not so far gone (and the rest of this sentence will tell you how far), I looked forward to Saturday afternoon to see an episode of Airwolf, a television serial about a high-tech helicopter, it starred Jan-Michael Vincent and Ernest Borgnine. I was recently reading an article about the Harpy Eagle and it was referred to as the “Flying Wolf”, and I thought Flying Wolf = Airwolf.
Of course, I would not have had an opportunity to photograph the “Airwolf” of the Television series, so this blog post is obviously about the Eagle 🙂
The Harpy Eagle (Harpia harpyja) is one of the largest and most powerful birds of prey in the world (one of the reasons it is sometimes called the Flying Wolf), it is a grey bird, its plumage consisting of feathers from slate-black, to grey to white. They make their nests high up in the canopy of the Rainforest in the forks of the trees, and are a monogamous species, mating for life, they raise one chick at a time, providing for that chick for up to ten months before sending it off on its own.
I’ve had the privilege of seeing a Harpy and its young in the wild, and of being able to view a young one up close (not in a cage in the zoo), they are marvellous birds, with talons that certainly scare me!
I’m not sure which would be scarier, seeing Stringfellow Hawk in a chopper diving towards me or one of these guys swooping, wings pulled back and talons poised…
The sky that day was a photographer’s dream, nice variety of clouds, a slowly setting sun, as Nikhil mentioned once “even a monkey could have gotten good photos that day”. I’m not entirely sure about the monkey, but I know we came away with some good ones.
For me, I liked this one because of the clouds, and then there’s the lone man walking along the wall, and the lone bird soaring in the sky.