I’ve been reading up lately about how to use the manual controls on our camera recently, especially exposure settings (aperture and shutter speed), and found an excellent tutorial.
And fortunately, right after I studied up, I was barraged with wildlife. For instance, just this morning when I went out with the dogs, I saw a herd of elk, a mother turkey with about 8 chicks, a moose running after the herd of elk, and 3 red-tailed hawks circling over the rocky forest nearby. The only thing I wasn’t able to get photos of was the baby turkeys — because I was forced to herd dogs, so they wouldn’t kill the chicks — but I got a few (admittedly poor) shots of them yesterday anyway. And I know where she nests now, so when Stassj gets back on Wednesday, I’m going to go without the dogs and get some closeups of her and the babies.
Anyhow, here’s some of my shots — we’ll start with the hawk, because these are the photos that I like the most (click on the photos for a larger version):
I’m pretty sure that this is a Red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), but my bird identification skills are still minimal. I’ll update this post when I’m able to make a positive ID.
There are several of these hawks in an area behind our place that is kind of open, with a lot of mossy/grassy areas full of boulders, and a bunch of big standing dead trees — somewhat healthy land, because it’s not owned by the state of Idaho and thus hasn’t been clearcut recently.
And here’s a pair of hawks hunting together. Did you know that when red-tailed hawks find a mate, that they generally stick together for life afterwards?
Well, that’s it for the hawk, I’ll put up the elk and moose and turkeys in separate posts. I’ve also got a lot more photos of the hawk, so I’m going to create a separate page about them when I have time, and include some information on their ecological role, and some history folklore about them.