As you read this, Rob and I will be in Cape Town – Simonstown, to be precise – for a long-awaited grand reunion with my son, Jonathan, our daughter-in-law Hayley and grandson Gabriel. They will have flown out from London on Friday evening; we are to meet up with them, and with my eldest daughter Kathy and grandson Thomas on the Saturday.
No blogging will be done, or processing of images, so I am posting this now, with a scheduled release date of 13th April.
Gotta keep the masses happy 🙂
Oh, and lest I forget, this is an image of two grey-headed gulls at the Marievale Bird Sanctuary. They were squawking loudly and raucously, but I have no idea what the heck they were talking about. Donald Trump’s latest torrent of lies, most probably.
Flamingoes alighted on the Sunday morning at Marievale, drawing out a dozen or more of us birdwatchers and photographers, tripods and telephoto lenses lined up along the narrow road across the vlei, binoculars glinting, a palpable excitement in the air.
Here is my flamingo portfolio.
The early wagtail catches the worm. Marievale Bird Sanctuary.
This confident raptor seemed unperturbed as I stopped the car below his high-wire perch, carefully climbed out, and rested the long lens on the open car-door…
Such a beautiful bird, the black-shouldered kite!
Ruffs in formation against a blank sky make an abstract pattern, suited I think to black-and-white; but Ruffs flying low in the morning light with water and reeds as backdrop make for a different kind of image, with a different mood and feeling.
Don’t you think?
I’ll spare you the play on ‘Reformation’…
These Ruffs, flying overhead, against a clear Marievale sky, made wonderful abstract patterns that seemed best in black-and-white.
I took a series of images of Southern Red Bishops clinging to the reeds early one morning at Marievale. This one, with the warm golden light, the puff of red feathers, the toes uncurling, wings lifted high above the departing bird’s head, is perhaps my favourite.
Spain has saturated my posts and photographs for some time now; with this series done, my eye hankers after water, marsh, sky and birdlife. So the next few posts mark a return to Marievale Bird Sanctuary, and a trawl through the images from my last visit, in November.
There are flamingoes, widow birds, ducks of all persuasions, and of course coots – the common, humble, red-knobbed coot, ubiquitous and unremarkable.
Except that these two images, to my mind at least, say more than just ‘coot’ – they say something, I hope, about the stillness, the absorption, the quiet miracle of watching another creature go peacefully about its business.