Tag Archives: Animals

The Other Sights of Spring

By Vladimir Brezina

Sure, there are the sunlit showy blossoms that everyone stops to admire—

Other Sights of Spring 1Other Sights of Spring 2Other Sights of Spring 3Other Sights of Spring 4

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But deeper in the shadows, too, if you look closely, Spring is everywhere stirring to life.Other Sights of Spring 5Other Sights of Spring 6Other Sights of Spring 7

And what’s this?

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A A A scrap of bread stirs to life the pond’s inhabitants, both expected…

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… and unexpectedOther Sights of Spring 11Other Sights of Spring 12Other Sights of Spring 13

More photos are here.

Trick or Treat

By Vladimir Brezina

No tricks, only treats, with this one.

Trick or Treat 1

Not so sure about this one, though…

Trick or Treat 2

A contribution to this week’s Photo Challenge, Treat.

We’re Back!

By Vladimir Brezina

We’re back from a trip to tropical Queensland, Australia—and, of course, processing a couple of thousand photos. Here’s a brief preview:

Saltwater crocodileJohna snorkeling on the Great Barrier ReefReef lifeIn the rain forestRain forest inhabitantLunch?CassowarySleepy koalaTame macropodsCrocodile feeding frenzy

Much more to come!

Tiny

By Vladimir Brezina

Tiny holds even tinier—

Tiny

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Tiny.

Squirrels, and Skvirels

By Vladimir Brezina

Begging squirrel

On an overcast, dull winter day in NYC’s Central Park, there is not much color and nothing moves—except squirrels!

(click on any photo to start slideshow)

And who knew that the word “squirrel” was so hard to pronounce? See here—

So, for days now, Johna and I have been saying “skvirel” to each other :-)

Bountiful, New York Style

By Vladimir Brezina

The Pigeon Lady, today in Rat Park—

Feeding the pigeons
Feeding the pigeons
... and the squirrels!

A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Bountiful. Another contribution is here.

Travel Theme: Inviting

By Vladimir Brezina

Landed on Sandy HookPaddling out from Manhattan for the day, we often find ourselves heading south to Sandy Hook, NJ. Our favorite spot to land there, about half-way down the bay side, is a picturesque little “island” of wooded high ground that rather improbably rises above the otherwise flat Sandy Hook View over the salt marshlandscape. (Indeed, it is man-made, being the overgrown concrete ruins of an early 20th-century military installation, Battery Arrowsmith.) Separating the “island” from the “mainland” of Sandy Hook is a salt marsh.

Whenever we land at the “island”, we always take a few minutes to walk round to the back, to the edge of the salt marsh.  We go there to observe a mass display of invitation.

The marsh is fringed by a zone of bare, or sometimes sparsely overgrown, ground. Looking down closely, we see that the ground is studded with holes, large and small.

Field of holes

At first, standing there, we see nothing remarkable.

But within a minute or two, we glimpse, here and there, a furtive movement. Then more and more, and soon there is movement all around—movement of a curiously stereotyped sort.

Each hole is occupied by a fiddler crab.

Two fiddler crabs
Fiddler crab emerging

There are both male and female crabs. They are easy to distinguish—the males have one greatly enlarged claw. And they use this claw in a characteristic courtship display. They stand next to their holes and repeatedly raise their large claws, inviting the females to enter.

It is quite a sight to see the whole area come alive with hundreds of crabs all raising their claws simultaneously in their inviting gesture…

(A contribution to Ailsa’s travel-themed photo challenge, Inviting.)