Pileated Woodpecker and the fledge

As my friend and I walked the path at Noland Trail in Newport News VA, he noticed a fresh hole in an old tree.  We weren’t sure what species made this nest hole.  We were curious. So, the next day we brought are our tripods, cameras, and a stool.  We set up our equipment about 30 to 40 yards from the base of the tree. The hole was about 40 feet up the tree and we waited patiently.  Finally, it paid off. This pileated adult male, one of the most prominent birds of the forest flew in and clung to the trunk of the tree near the nest hole. To my surprise, as he moved to the hole a pileated fledge peeked its’ head out of the hole.

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By R Smith

Hermit Thrush

What great entertainment it was to watch this thrush strut and chirp its’ song.  At first this bird looked like the sand was too hot for his feet.  The high pitch sound from its beak seemed to cry out ouch! Ouch!  After I took the shot, I noticed he wasn’t in pain.  He was in love.  That was his mating dance and call for the female a few yards up on the grassy patch of the beach.Image

By R Smith

Brown pelican with its young

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I captured this picture of the parent and the young in early June 2013 on the lower end of the James River.  I like the diamond uniformity; the parent pelican is at the rear while the juveniles are in the front.  A great day for the pelican family to float down the river.

By R Smith

Parent and Young Barred Owls

I captured this adult and juvenile barred owl along the Nolan trail in Newport News, VA.  The perimeter of the Nolan trail surrounds Lake Maury; which is within a mature, mixed forest of large trees of hemlock, maple, oak, hickory, and beech.   When I first spotted this fledging owl, it was roosted on the branch.  Normally, an owl will sleep during the day and are not very active.  But, this young guy was alert and constantly looking around.  I figured it was waiting on its parent to come back.  So I set up my tripod and camera and waited about two hours.  Finally, out of nowhere, the adult owl appeared along side the juvenile owl.  This was a great capture of a barred owl nurturing its young, the next generation of these beautiful birds.

Unlike human love, animals’ internal love appears natural.  Humans make the power of love so difficult.  Before God created man and woman, He created the animal kingdom.  Maybe we are to learn from the animals.  I see in this picture love, joy, kindness, compassion, and comfort.

By Richard Smith
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