Untamed Land

Untamed Land
Untamed Land

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Some Old Art, and New Bird Photos

Brody stands on a ridge overlooking some of the Independence Mine buildings near Hatcher Pass. This is an old 8x10" painting. Brody moved out of state last year. Too bad, I really enjoyed white water rafting with friends on his raft. I hope he took this painting with him when he left.
11x14" Short-eared Owl, I think that this was my first Short-eared Owl painting. I'm due to paint another someday, they are so elegant.
Golden-crowned Sparrows in Fireweed. I forget the dimensions of this old painting.
Another painting with much room for improvement, 10x8" Pine Grosbeak. A subject that deserves a better effort. I guess that it's not too terrible.
Short-billed Dowitchers, 11x14". I thought this one would never sell. So many paintings that are so much better have not. It did sell, thank goodness. I saw Short-billed Dowitchers today, as you will soon see.
Lately I have been visiting the coast twice a week. That's because the main push of migrating shorebirds could come through any day now. The local bird experts say that they are late this year. The big shorebird numbers have been visiting other Alaska locations, just not here. We hope that they do not overfly our part of the state.
There were some Hudsonian Godwits with the Mew Gull above, and a few other things.
The male is taking a bath while it's mate looks on.
A nice looking female godwit.
Another nice female.
An impressive male godwit. You can identify godwits from most other shorebirds by their two-toned bills.
I was just pressing the shutter button on my camera, trying to photograph a Short-billed Dowitcher when this Greater Yellowlegs landed next to it. A lucky shot.
The short-billed Dowitcher has a long, straight bill like a godwit. However it's bill is all dark, and droops very slightly where the godwit's bill is slightly upturned. It is also somewhat smaller than a godwit, with shorter legs.
Short-billed Dowitchers are found predominately near the coast while Long-billed Dowitchers tend to be inland. I'm lazy, and just assume that all the coastal dowitchers are short-billed. They look nearly identical, and bill length is not always a reliable field mark.

2 comments:

Unknown said...

I only look these shore birds, in autumn or in winter when the colour of his plumage its more eroded,and also its more difficult tho distinguish one specie of other.The short eared owl its an scarce bird in Catalonia and stay few time in my country.

Friend of HK said...

The painting of Short-billed Dowitchers is my favourite!