Thursday, September 5, 2019

Crops & Clips: Flashback to September, 2016

Once again I am looking back through the retrospectroscope at photos I took three years ago, They remind me of favorite memes-- creatures of all kinds (especially birds), flowers, fences, skies and reflections, as well as scenes which I found enjoyable and speak for themselves.

We started the month with an interesting exotic find, a Yellow-collared Lovebird (Agapornis personatus). Popular in the pet trade, it is native to northeast Tanzania and also called Masked Lovebird, Black-masked Lovebird or Eye Ring Lovebird. I first spotted this bird from a distance after hearing its unusual call from quite far away atop the spire of a Royal Palm. At first all I could see was that it had bright yellow plumage. I chased it down the path and it posed nicely high up.

Undoubtedly an escaped pet, it looked to be in good shape. Maybe the high southerly winds from the storm bands of Hurricane Hermine* damaged an aviary.

Yellow-collared Lovebird 02-20160903

Yellow-collared Lovebird 03-20160903

A  colorful male Northern Flicker perched in a Pond Cypress on September 3:

Northern Flicker HDR 02-20160903

A Blue-gray Gnatcatcher frolicked amid the cypress sprigs:

Cypress sprigs 20160905

Prairie Warblers migrate laterally. They have returned inland from their coastal mangrove breeding territories:

Prairie Warbler 20160912

American Redstarts are early migrants:

American Redstart 20160901

Ovenbirds had arrived. Some may winter nearby:

Ovenbird HDR 05-20160904

A Great Egret cast a nice reflection:

Great Egret HDR 02-20160907

An immature Cooper's Hawk flew low overhead:

Cooper's Hawk HDR 20160909

The sun was just rising as a Bald Eagle passed over  the wetlands:

Bald Eagle female at 0712 AM 20160918

Merlins spent the winter here. These small falcons are very shy. I obtained this photo from quite a distance:

Merlin HDR 20160918

Alligator Flag was in bloom. A wetlands relative of the banana plant, Its fruits and seeds on zigzag stems will attract Purple Gallinules:

Alligator Flag flowers 02-20160916 

On the morning of September 17 the full Harvest Moon settled down over the lake:

Harvest Moon setting HDR  20160917

View to  the southeast before sunrise on September 20:

View to SE HDR 20160920

On September 22, the day of autumnal equinox, the sun rose directly down "Sundial Alley," next to our birding patch. As this driveway is oriented directly to the east, it helps me to keep track of the seasons as sunrise shifts its way back and forth along the horizon.

Equinox sunrise HDR  2-20160922

An immature Green Heron on the first day of autumn:

Green Heron HDR 20160922

Near the end of the month we flew out to our (then) second home in NE Illinois. I had just acquired my Canon 80D camera and this probably is why I processed a record number of photos that month-- over 1,200! It was the height of migration, which also contributed to the high frequency of clicks.

At Nelson Lake/Dick Young preserve in Batavia, one of our  favorite birding locations, a Red-tailed Hawk soared overhead:

Red-tailed Hawk HDR 01-20160925

The north entry path at Nelson Lake:

Nelson Lake north entry HDR 20160926

I tried out some macro shots with my new camera. Milkweed Bugs were colorful subjects:

Milkweed Bugs 20160925

A Honeybee collected pollen on a Heath Aster:

Honeybee on Heath Aster 20160925

Yellow Jacket wasp on Heath Aster:

Yellow Jacket on Heath Aster 20160925

Aromatic Aster: 

Aromatic Aster- Symphyotrichum oblongifolium 20160925

New England Aster:

New England Aster 20160926

Red Admiral butterfly:

Red Admiral 03-20160929

The south prairie at Nelson Lake:

Nelson Lake south prairie HDR 20160929

A pair of Sandhill Cranes, with their colt in between them, took flight over the prairie:

Sandhill Cranes in flight HDR 02-20160926

Fast forward to the present (September 2, 2019): Hurricane Dorian has been stalled over The Bahamas for several hours. The threat to south Florida appears to have abated. Our home location is the little red dot SW of Fort Lauderdale: 

Hurricane 20190902 1142AM

*Here is an iPhone photo of sunrise from the back patio of  our home on August 27, 2016. This is the tropical disturbance  (Hurricane Hermine) alluded to at the beginning of this post. Hurricanes seem to strike around my birthday every year! 

Sunrise iPhone 01-20160827

= = =  = = =  = = = =  = = = = =

Linking to Misty's  CAMERA CRITTERS,

Linking to Eileen's SATURDAY'S CRITTERS,

Linking to SKYWATCH FRIDAY by Yogi, Sylvia and Sandy


Linking to BirdD'Pot by Anni

Linking to Our World Tuesday by Lady Fi

Linking to Wild Bird Wednesday by Stewart

Linking to Wordless Wednesday (on Tuesday) by NC Sue

Linking to ALL SEASONS by Jesh

 Linking to Fences Around the World by Gosia


Please visit the links to all these memes to see some excellent photos on display


  1. As always your photography is astoundingly beautiful. That sunrise took my breathe.

  2. The retrospectroscope never disappoints! Glad you are safe from the hurricane. Beautiful sky shots. The Lovebird is so beautiful and exotic looking... it hardly looks real!

  3. An incredible variety of bird, and landscape shots. I love the American Egret photo especially. I am glad to hear that Dorian did not hit your town.

  4. The last sky shot is beautiful !

  5. Some of these pictures look just like paintings. I loved the sky ones the most, but the birds were a close second. And the last sky picture? Florida produces the most beautiful sunsets, I believe.

  6. I always think I am going to pick a favourite Kenneth but your fabulous images just keep coming one after another. It is a joy to see them so thank you for sharing your amazing achivies with us. Have a wonderful weekend.

  7. Wonderful photos! I hope you escaped any damage from Dorian. We have family on St. Simon's Island and they fared well.

  8. Awesome photos! Maybe you should travel for your birthdays... somewhere away from the coast!

  9. It's so interesting to see even birds that have been pets in the wild. I love your Prairie Warbler. I've had quite a discussion about the Warbler I've shared today. Always neat to see birds in Florida! Love your sky photos too! Enjoy your weekend! It got HOT again!

  10. As always, Ken, exceptional photography! Of course, your birds are always favored, but this week I learned about the beauty of a new plant...alligator flag.
    Thank you for linking up with us this weekend, at I'd Rather B Birdin'.

  11. Hello, I feel sad for the Bahamas but I am happy Dorian missed Florida. Your bird photos are gorgeous, as always. Neat sighting of the Lovebird, it is pretty. I love the sky captures. I just got back from my trip and I am catching up with comments. Thanks for linking up and sharing your post. Have a happy day and a great new week! PS, I appreciate your visits and comments.

  12. You always find the most amazing birds and beautiful sunsets!

  13. Great set of pictures - even if one is a little exotic! Hope you came through the storm in one piece.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  14. All these are beautiful!
    Thanks for sharing at

  15. So much to see in this post - interesting that so many birds are in FL overwintering! Love the delicate looking Alligator flag in bloom now. Was surprised you didn't use with the macro lens before, since all your subjects are small or far away! Her try-out looks very successful to me. To keep learning keeps us from getting old, ll:) Your birthday - so that means you were born in hurricane season! Beautiful and interesting flower images, Ken. Many thanks for sharing them with All Seasons, and also thanks for your interesting comment. Good to know you are very capable, but not perfect:)

  16. You take breathtaking photos. I hope you know it. :-)

  17. What a delightful variety of critters. Most of the birds are new to me. All your photos are great to see while I'm still waiting for spring!

    My Corner of the World

  18. Breathtaking photos of such beautiful creatures and nature. I adore seeing parrots in the wild.

  19. These are all exquisite photos that we will not get tired of even repeatedly. I am reviving my other blogpost and deleting inactive sites for a few yrs now! When i transferred to this more active blog, i saw your post. Best regards.


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