Sunday, November 27, 2011

The sun, the rose, the moment

It was that last trickle of a moment.  That finely sliced filament of time, when the sun has resorted to twisting and weaving its rays through the trees, the shining leaves and dusty air.  The sun was exhausting itself pushing its evaporating light into dwindling crevices, looking for one last natural beauty to illuminate.  

That's when I squeezed the shutter release on this shot. The sun's nature-spun rays recreated the brilliance of its shine on the center of this Knock-out Rose in our backyard.

I know you won't believe this, but it was even more awe-striking to see in person.  It was one of those moments when beauty just breaks apart the time around you.  I breathed deep as the light vaporized.  The wind was still blowing briskly and the temperature was still dropping.  In the morning, it will be at freezing -- a frost that may seize this rose in death.  The sun may never get another chance to light-paint this rose.

(Click on the photo to see the whole shot.)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Handsome Egret

I suppose if you were a Great Egret, you might think this is the most handsome face you have ever seen.  I was travelling out the old Ferry road from Bridge City when I captured this photo.  It's a good place for bird shots.  A small canal gives the birds a place to fish -- sitting on the opposite side of the canal from the road gives them a sense of security.

Monday, November 21, 2011

No path is easy

"You take the high road and I'll take the low road," seems to be the theme here as our grandkids, Sullivan and Sophie,  have different ideas about reaching the goal.

This is the playground at Central Park in Beaumont, Texas.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Playground pattern draws interest

I wish I could tell you what attracted me to this shot at the Central Park playground in Beaumont.  The opposing patterns maybe?  Maybe the complexity of repetition in the shot.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Grackle games

These two Grackles were have fun playing King on the Mountain at Central Park in Beaumont this morning.  ( I am not sure they understood the rules, though)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Female Grackle sashays near Lake Sabine

This female Grackle was strutting her stuff by Lake Sabine and Bridge City.  I was coming back from Orange the other day and decided to see what lie out that way.  I was not disappointed.  The Egrets, Ahingas, gulls and Grackles were busy soaking up the sun and winds.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Frost flees its icy form

This week's first fall frost quickly turned to water drops on the grass leaves in the yard.  The sun had only to peak through the tree leaves and the icy cover was ready to shift shapes.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Flies in the backfield, two by tow

Just a supposition here, but, I'm thinking these flies are practicing for their big game this weekend against the reigning champion fleas.  It seems to me to involve too many in the backfield -- it must be some kind of flea-flicker play.  

The water-lily in the nearby pond gives them a feel for playing in a dome, I suspect.  Notice how big their front line is.  How would you like to be a flea and face those heavyweight hovers?

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Porch sitters see Beaumont skyline from new center

The downtown skyline of Beaumont frames the sky from the porch of the new Civic Center which is nearly completion.  The grey expanse in the foreground will be a small lake, giving a reflection of the downtown-sky ensemble.  It should make for some very poetic photography.

Friday, October 21, 2011

New Civic Center captures skyline

The new Beaumont Civic Center at the edge of downtown is starting to take shape.  The big glass front of the building overlooks Beaumont's skyline.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Great Egret makes a statement

This Great Egret seems to be making a statement, standing on the wildlife management area sign in marshes near Bridge City, TX.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Drought will not let go of SE Texas

This stagnating drought is taking its toll.  Despite a few occasional respites, the dry is soaking into everything.  I had stopped by a pond a few years back to take a shot during a former drought and I was devastated by the drying and dying I saw.

So, I thought I would check out another near by pond (one I had not yet explored). It was much the same story this year.  The heat-soaked mud bottom was exposed and the cracks were opening deeper and deeper. Maybe some cooler weather will help that a bit. but, today was not that.  With the temperature scorching to the upper 90's again, it feels like summer has a dug its claws into Southeast Texas and is going for the kill.

Please, somebody tell the weatherman that summer is over! 
It doesn't take a weatherman to know when to call off a drought. Enough, already.

Tomorrow -- the colors of drought.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Eye-catching Northern Cardinal pays visit

This very healthy looking and brilliantly marked Northern Cardinal cam visiting the other day.   He was hard bird to take a photo of -- every time I would step out side he would fly to the trees behind our house.Finally I set up my tripod right next to the door and tried shooting by just slipping my arm out the door.  It worked on the third try.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Hummingbird dictator may be vulnerable?

What's wrong with this tough guy that is terrorizing the other humming birds in my back yard? 

He has been claiming the fount of eternal elixir (otherwise known as the hummingbird feeder) as his sole  and exclusive property for several weeks now. He fends off any claim by intruders with an aerial battle that rivals F-16s. 

That has been going on for a while.  

But now, he perches there with his mouth wide open in some kind of "spiking the football" gesture. I don't know if he got into a testosterone-spiked flower or he is just into the super macho kind of the elixir thing, Rambo-style. 

It's fun to watch, but the other hummingbirds I am sure are not enjoying it. I have heard talk of a coup.

I may join the conspirators -- this guy is just relishing his role too much. What if I put the other hummingbird feeder on the other side of the yard? Could Mr. Macho defend that much territory?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A lone Hummingbird fends off a flock of frenzied flyers

This little Hummingbird is creating quite a stir in our backyard -- he has decided that the nectar is all his.  My wife, Linda, went and bought a second feeder.  Our flying defender then decided both  feeders were his and chased any other fellows of the feather away when ever they ventured near.  

I decided to move the two feeders further apart to see if that would get his generous juices flowing. It did not work.  It just made him have to work harder -- defending a larger perimeter.  In this photo after fending off an frenzied attack by a squadron of feathery flyers, he ruffles his feathers.  I am not sure if he is trying to enlarge his stature or just trying to refresh himself for the next assault on his flavory fluid.

Lurking lizard nets nothing

The stealthy hunter has a problem on his hands er, pads.  The lurking lizard is stalking the insect that can just barely be seen on the right (the black triangle).  Problem is, the lizard is on the other side of the netting and he can't figure that out.  I watched the scene play out for about 20 minutes.  The insect would move every once in a while, but never fly away. The lizard's best lurking did him no good for his breakfast this day, though I suspect the practice was very valuable.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The flower subs for shade

The sunlight was coming through the base of this flower in my back yard as it hung down after several days of no rain.  That didn't stop the bees and the Hummingbirds from finding what they wanted.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Hummingbird Heaven

The Hummingbirds have been hanging around our house a lot lately.  They actually started coming before we put the feeder up.  There have been as many  as nine at a time.  It's fun to watch their antics over the feeder.  One takes a sip and then flies to the top to play guard.  If another Hummingbird comes up for a sip, it chases him away.  While those two are off playing chase, another will come up and get a sip.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Egrets, herons hunker by the thousands

On the drive home from Baton Rouge to Beaumont the other day, I was watching several flocks of egrets heading west along side of me.  They seemed to slow up at the next intersection, so I decided to pull off the I-10 there to see if I could catch a picture of a passing flock..  When I  pulled to a stop, I found a fly-in taking place for thousands of birds which filled nearly every branch of the trees for a couple football fields in length.  They were mostly cattle egret, but a few anhingas, ibis and blue heron were mixing in -- apparently, unable to pass up a fait do-do.

They were still flocking in from the south and east, circling the feathery fete and then trying to push their way in for a branch -- occupied or not.  There were bird feathers floating in the air and the loud cacophony of  the flustering cluster had the hum of a Texas football game after the Hail Mary fell just beyond reach.  I surmised they were gathering in advance of northern front  bringing lightning and rain. I was in a hurry to snap as many photos as quickly as I could since the rain front and the missing sun were racing to see who could bring on the darkness first.

As I was pulling back onto the I-10, I stopped again because the service road offered another vantage point where birds were bunched on de-leafed trees.  I-10 truck drivers, zooming past, who saw me shooting pictures, blasted their horns.  It took me about three of these passing blares to realize they were trying to stir up the birds for me to get a better shot.

I snapped off a bunch of shots, but it was hard to get close to the trees and the gathering gloom smothered all the camera tricks I tried.

It was an interesting diversion from a monotonous drive.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Challenging the sun

My wife, Linda, loved the volunteer sunflowers that cropped up in the back yard earlier in the summer.  Enough so, that she bought some seed and now is watching them daily.  About eight of them have opened wide to challenge the sun.  This is one of the next ones to take on his/her destiny. Its soon-to-be petals are pulling away from the center of the flower and unfurling.   Its a lot of fun to watch the slow burst of "sunergy."

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

That old moon

There must be a million songs about the moon. Probably my favorite is the Beatles son, "Mr., Moonlight."  You can pick your favorite and sing it now.  Wax and wane all you want.

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Saturday, July 16, 2011

Is lizard lucubrating or lollygagging?

Strange place for a lizard to chose to do his preying. Maybe he misunderstood?

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The last rain dance?

The rains have come back to Southeast Texas.  They are not really drought-ending soakings.  More like a sprinkling compared to months of sparce moisture.  This was the 12 tee-box a the Brentwood Country Club late Sunday evening, the day before the first rain fell in weeks.  The sprinklers were shooting high into the air, letting the water fall like rain drops.  I guess you could call it a rain dance.

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Morning on the golf course

The sun has barely risen and already people are jetting off to far destinations.

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Ironman and mom

We were in the Woodlands this weekend to support our son, Charles, in his second Ironman competition.
This shot is after he had completed the swim and the 112-mile bike run and was on the second of three 8 mile loops in the marathon part of the event.  He slowed down to walk a few feet with mom, Linda, who is obviously beam
ing.  He finished in 12 hours and 24 minutes

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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Fighting heat and drought in a puddle

This is a scene I shot a couple years ago down along the coastal highway in Cameron Parish, LA.  There was a strong drought and small ponds like these were lucky just to be puddles.  Notice that the boat in the foreground had probably been underwater at one time when it filled with silt.  The crabs looked to have died baking in the sun. This Rail (possibly a King Rail?) was still trying to eke out a living in this shrinking ecosphere.

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Sunday, May 8, 2011

Squirrelly encourter of the friendly kind

My little friend at work found a peanut and wasn't going to put it down.  Not even when I pointed a camera at him. 

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Friday, May 6, 2011

Tattered, strewn sky

This is just one more look at that jigsawed sunset that spread out like a lint-covered ceiling a couple weeks ago.

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Friday, April 29, 2011

A peak inside a flower

A peak inside a flower. How was I to know there was a party going on?

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Shredded hope

This is another shot from that amazing sunset this past weekend.  With the way the clouds were shredded I expected some wet weather.

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Friday, April 22, 2011

By the dawn's early light.

A cool, windy, morning walk to the State Capitol a couple weeks ago for a Leadership Southeast Texas Event yielded this shot.

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Seeing eye-to-eye

My little friend at work doesn't run off so fast anymore. He does, however, consider 20 feet to be a good distance to stay away  -- especially if it involves a little elevation.  I try not to scare him by coming close, but we make good eye contact.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

The road side nectar trade

Even the small flowers along the way are marketing their wares to any skyfaring nectar hunter.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Folded, spindled, mutilated and pierce clouds.

It was a very strange sunset the other night with winds shreding clouds in to tethers with sharps winds aloft.  This is a straight up shot that lost some of its blueness in trying to bring out the clouds. Notice the jet piercing it's way across the sky.  I can't even imagine what the heavens looked like from up there.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A pair of lounging Black Vultures

I was just a short walk into the woods when I heard something behind me.  I turned around to see these Black Vultures only about 30 feet away and almost at my eye level.   I don't know how I missed them when i walked past.  I was surprise to even get my camera up high enough to get this shot off before they swooped away to a nearby tree.

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Barbs, blooms and bugs along the byways

Another along-the-road-to-Austin shot.  it Spring and this Cactus is taking full advantage of the opportunity. It you can see it, there is a spider web strung like a bridge across the top buds-- no spot on earth is too remote or dangerous for these industrious insects

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Monday, April 11, 2011

River Adventures

Coming through the lock at the Neches River Saltwater Barrier is the Cardinal River Adventures Boat to pick up a group for a tour in the swamps and bayous in Southeast Texas.  Normally the Cardinal embarks at the Beaumont Riverfront Park, but construction has moved that.  The boat does group and public tours to expose locals and visitors to habitats and natural settings in the Golden Triangle.  The land inside the Saltwater Barrier at the end of Bigner Road is itself a nice place for a nature adventure. Several small ponds in the area are favorites for bank-fishers.

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Friday, April 8, 2011

Baby Boy Buser and nanny

We have a new grandson.  Shawn and Sarah had a 6 lb. 15 ounce baby boy, who was 19 inches with a head full of hair.  In the photo, my wife, Nanny Buser, beams with pride. In case your wondering, the name is still pending. In this picture, the newest Buser was about 12 hours old.

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Dowtown Beaumont -- blooming library

This downtown shot of Beaumont's Tyreall Historical Libarary was taken just before Spring sprung. I actually shot this photo a few weeks ago.  Sometimes I don't get around to posting a photo for a while.  Some of them I never get to.

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Heart-gone, felled in the forest.

Not even good for lumber anymore, this tree, felled in the forest, shows signs of having lost its heart(wood).

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In the still, of the flashlight...

I was just playing with a new lens set -- actually an old lens set: a Minolta OM lens with and adapter to fit my E-510.  You are very observant.  I could wait to try it out.  So I used a flash.  Problem was that it was so dark I couldn't see the flower enough to focus on it.  So I held a flash light in my armpit.  Turns out I was pretty pleased, although a flash at night on a flower can leave that shiny surface.

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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cactus needling upward

Along the highway the other day, I spotted this cactus doing its best Spring impression -- prickling upward and protecting its turf.

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Sunday, April 3, 2011

Life on a tree

I am not much of an expert on plants, but I suppose this hairy ball growing on a tree limb is a vermiliad of some kind.  The flowers looked pretty dried out for a Spring season.

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Friday, April 1, 2011

The roads are alive with the .....

You know its spring when... you can stop almost anywhere along the road and photo one of nature's beauties

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Little Green Heon, reflecting on his day

This was a Little Green Heron I shot a couple years ago.  He was sitting contently on the branch catching the last rays of the day.

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