Nesting Along the Water’s Edge

On Saturday morning, I went to one of my favorite places for kayaking. I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to kayak, since it has been over a year when water levels were sufficient to kayak this area. Fortunately, all the recent rains made it quite kayakable! The main issues at this location are fallen trees in the water … in times of low water, it is impossible to get over the downed trees and back to the wildlife area. On Saturday’s trip, I only had to kayak over 2 downed trees, both mostly submerged.

I have always loved this location for kayaking as there is a large beaver lodge. Last year, this lodge was inactive due to the water level falling totally below the lodge! As of now, the lodge is about half-covered with water. Although I didn’t see any beavers Saturday, I heard at least 3 of them inside the lodge, gnawing on tree limbs that they must have taken inside the underwater entrance (did you know that beavers must constantly chew on wood, or their teeth outgrow their mouth?).

Although no beavers were photographed, I did get to photograph another favorite subject at this location … Prothonotary Warblers (Protonotaria citrea). In fact, while sitting near the lodge, I noticed one female warbler who kept returning to forage among the wood stacked on top of the beaver lodge. For a while, I thought she was just foraging for insects, but finally noticed that she was collecting nest materials among the wood. Here are some images I captured of the warblers as they kept returning to the lodge:

Prothonotary Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Prothonotary Warbler

Kayaking the narrow waters at this location has put me into close proximity to the Prothonotary Warblers on many different occasions. They are wonderful little birds and I thoroughly enjoy photographing them as they move about the area.

Photographic Equipment Used:

  • Canon 7D body
  • Canon EF100mm-400mm, f/4.5-f/5.6 IS lens
  • Handheld from the kayak, with IS “On”
  • ISO 1600
  • Aperture f/5.6
  • Shutter 1/200 sec. to 1/5,000 sec.

 

 

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Posted in 2014, Bird Photography, Birds, Blog, Nature Photography, Photography from a kayak
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