BELINDA GROVER PHOTOGRAPHY

STOPS ALONG THE WAY


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TO EVERY SEASON (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Queen Anne'sLace

By late March, the ground begins to thaw and the ice starts to melt on the waterways. We’ll be outside with our cameras, enjoying the beginning of spring. I live in a country of contrasts – the snow and ice of winter giving way to the warmer days that follow!

Queen Anne's Lace- 2


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SNAPPING TURTLE

TurtleThe snapping turtle surfaced from the murky water as I stood on a viewing platform. I thought it was quite young given its size but with all the algae on its shell I’m not so sure. This small lake has three kinds of turtles, the snapper growing the largest. After a long winter of hibernation deep in the mud, we’ll see them again when the ice melts in spring.


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VIEW FROM A TRAIN

TrainStaring at the countryside speeding past my window, I took a few photos with my cell phone.  I’m not familiar with my phone camera, and I was a considerable distance from the farm but the countryside was beautiful and I wanted to capture what I saw.  


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CITY WALK (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

ElmdaleThis building once housed a tavern built in 1909, it’s now a fine restaurant. Over a side door, it has retained a sign from a time when women required an escort to enter a bar. Another find on a walk through the city.

Elmdale-2


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MUSKRAT

MUSKRAT The reserve we go to has both beavers and muskrats although muskrats are more common. This muskrat was gliding silently through the water in among the reeds. Interesting fact – muskrats are more closely related to voles than to beavers and their tail is more like a rat tail as you can see in the photo.


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REFLECTIONS OF THE PAST (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Chateau Laurier.jpgThe Chateau Laurier, an iconic hotel in Ottawa’s Parliament district was built in the Gothic Revival style between 1909 and 1912. It was commissioned by the Grand Trunk Railway and designated a national historic site in 1980. In the first photo you see it reflected in the window of the Senate of Canada (the former Union Station). The second photo provides a view of the hotel taken from a park just behind it.

Chateau Laurier-2


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FROG ON A LOG

Frog.jpgThe frog is well camouflaged! A little trade secret – I added a vignette to darken the background and a radial dial to brighten his face, both Lightroom edits. A fine subject, nicely placed, the photo just needed a bit of fine tuning to do this handsome fellow justice.


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FEMALE RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD – 2

F RW BlackbirdThis is another photo of the female red-winged blackbird I featured a few days ago. It was a hot day and the bird found a shady spot to rest. We usually see the first of these birds return to our region in late March. The males announce their arrival with noisy song.


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TOP TO BOTTOM (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

CityscapesTall buildings and architectural features aren’t my usual photo subjects. But it’s nice to try new things with my photography which are as much a part of my environment as the woods I love to walk. The sky peering through the towers is still a nod to nature.

The powerful base of The Old Union Station, (now the Senate of Canada), a building I walk by often is impressive for its form and detail.

Cityscapes-2


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RED SQUIRREL

Red SquirrelI’ve featured quite a few photos of red squirrels. I find them very attractive, for their looks and lively temperament. This one was enjoying a snack by a well stocked feeder. The birds often scatter a lot of seeds on the ground, leaving tasty leftovers for the taking.


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COUNTRY CALM (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Barn2

A weathered barn in a field of wild flowers. One of the pleasures of a country drive. I’m fortunate that the city I live in encompasses a lot of rural farmland, a short drive from the concrete and high rises.

Barn


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NOD TO SUMMER (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Summer FlowersDaisies are some of our earlier wild flowers, sunflowers appear later in the summer and last long into the fall. They are both members of the same family of plants, Asteraceae, which I look forward to seeing when the warm weather returns.

Summer Flowers-2


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A LOOK BACK, WOOD DUCK

Duckling
The weather today is cold, grey and wet. I thought a scene like this was a good antidote. The duckling was exploring his new surroundings. There are a lot of predators of these young birds and I wished it well as I walked along.


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BLUE JAY

BluejayPeople with backyard feeders tell me they often have blue jays visit their feeders. Living in the city and having no backyard, my sightings are in the woods and far less frequent. The bird’s noisy call usually alerts me to its presence as it did so here. The jay stopped for a minute amid the fall colours.


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GREY TREEFROG

Tree FrogThese frogs can be grey, brown or green. This one was a lovely shade of green. I’ve heard them calling a few times but had never seen one close up. A friend was focused on a patch of sunflowers as we approached and he pointed to this well camouflaged frog. They overwinter under leaf litter and snow.


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END OF SEASON (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Mallard 2Most ducks have left our rivers and lakes as the water begins to freeze. A few mallards remain by the open water in a reserve we visit but the majority have left for the season. These photos were taken a month ago when the fall colours were at their height.Mallard


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ON THE WATER’S EDGE (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Sparrows

I watched the sparrow as it paused on the edge of the pond and then walked about. This pond is a favourite of frogs too and attracts other birds and insects during the course of the summer. The sparrow is an energetic little bird with striking colouring. Always fun to photograph.

Sparrows-2


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GREAT BLUE HERON (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

GBHWe didn’t see many Great Blue Herons this year and they tended to fish at quite a distance. I had to crop the photo but was rewarded by some pretty spectacular reflections and lighting.

GBH-2

 


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CURIOSITY (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Ali-Leaf-2I wondered if I could photograph a leaf as it floated to the ground. At 1/640th of a second I managed to get one leaf in perfect focus.
The second photo was taken this fall. When I first saw the thing in the water several years ago, it startled me as it looked like an exotic vine or reptile. I later found out that it was the work of beavers. (After all, we don’t have alligators in Ottawa😏 .)

Ali-Leaf


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WOOD DUCK

WoodduckI took this photo two weeks ago, before the temperature began to drop. The wood duck had a faraway look as though he knew it was soon time to leave for the winter. Snow is on the way tonight, I sure hope all the birds that should have left are well on their way. I’ll have to check on the next sunny day.


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FALL COLLECTION – 3 (THREE PHOTOGRAPHS)

Leaves & BerriesThe way the sun hit the lime coloured leaf reminded me of holiday lights. As I continued my walk I came upon these rich purple berries (which the birds will enjoy in the cold months ahead). Both photos required little cropping, I just moved around a bit to get a pleasing composition.

Leaves & Berries-3

Leaves & Berries-2

 


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LAST OF THE SUMMER FLOWERS – 3 (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Sunflowers-2These were taken earlier in the month. Most of our wildflowers have gone to seed but a few still remain, including these hardy wild sunflowers. We’ve only had a few nights that have dipped below the freezing mark and the days have been mostly sunny so the flowers might last a bit longer.

Sunflowers

 


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THIS OLD HOUSE (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Window-2Like most urban centres, Ottawa is going through a transformation. The old wooden house is flush against a modern apartment unit. The new structure is not a high-rise like some buildings going up and is quite attractive but it changes the feel of the neighbourhood and with it raises the question of what we’re losing as a result.

Window