BELINDA GROVER PHOTOGRAPHY

STOPS ALONG THE WAY


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FROG THURSDAY (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

FrogThere’s a little pond in a wildlife garden we go to that has several resident leopard frogs. I always check the pond when we first get there and again when we leave. Most times the frogs hardly budge, so I can always take a few more photos.

Frog-2


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METALLIC BEES (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Sweat Bees I took these photos early last fall. It was a good year for these brilliantly coloured bees. The first was taken in the woods and the second in a neighbourhood garden, both with my 300 mm lens, which I often use for close ups like these. It keeps me at a comfortable distance from stinging insects although these bees are usually too busy feeding to pay me any attention.

Sweat Bees-2


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DAPPER DUCK

Mallard on rock

If you follow my blog you’ll know that I’m pretty partial to mallards. I never get tired of photographing them. Unlike their more flashy cousins, many are here year round, always ready for a close up or group photo. Good looking ducks full of personality.


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CHICKADEE ON SUMAC

ChickadeeA chickadee from last spring. Usually at this point, I’m at the reserve looking out for early spring migrants. This year, it’s different for everyone. So for the time being I’ll be posting photos I took earlier last year.


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HOODED MERGANSER

MerganserWe don’t see many hooded mergansers. When we do, they’re usually too far away to get a decent photo. This female was closer to shore than usual, she was on her own, no other ducks in sight. When she saw me, she swam away but I did manage to get this parting shot.


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MONARCHS (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

MonarchsLast year was a terrific one for butterflies; monarchs and painted ladies seemed to be everywhere. Monarchs were a particular pleasure as we hadn’t seen too many in recent years. I took these in September, shortly they would begin their migration to central Mexico.

Monarchs-2


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JUNE DRAGONFLIES (THREE PHOTOGRAPHS)

DragonfliesI took a lot of dragonfly photographs last June. They tend to emerge in bursts and you see them everywhere. I particularly like to watch them when they land on lily pads and turn slowly towards the sun. They look like mini helicopters.

Dragonflies-3

Dragonflies-2


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LANEWAYS (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Alleyway-2It’s fun to wander down some of the laneways in town. They often run several city blocks. I sometimes catch a glimpse of a garden, back stoop or garage and there’s always plenty of sun and greenery. The dogs in the backyards are friendly too, they rarely bark as I pass by.

Alleyway


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WILD CHILD OR CITY BRED (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

IrisThe first photo was taken at our favourite reserve. We see a few irises along the water’s edge every June. The second photo was taken in a neighbourhood garden. The cultivated irises are beautiful but I prefer the more subtle colour of the wild flower. And though it looks delicate, it really can’t be as it thrives in this natural setting.

Iris-2


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OPEN DOORS (THREE PHOTOGRAPHS)

Water Plant-3

We visited one of Ottawa’s water filtration plants at a Doors Open event last summer. The Lemieux Island Water Purification Plant opened in 1932 and is a wonderful limestone structure with fine brass work and marble galleries. I’ve visited several times and can’t help but be impressed by the beauty of a building that houses a public utility.Water Plant-2Water Plant


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BY THE WATER

ArboreteumOn a sunny day last July, we found a shady spot by the water to cool off. The air was hot and still and the scent of iris hung in the air. The snow might be falling outside right now but a scene like this reminds me that we’re headed in the right direction. 😊


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OFF COURSE

DownyFar from any green space, we stopped to photograph this downy woodpecker on a busy street. The management of the office tower had just planted trees outside and the bird decided to investigate. Office workers rushed by and no one else seemed to notice the downy at work.


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WATCHFUL DUCK

Mallard 2This mallard was standing on a log, staring in my direction as I walked along a bridge that crossed a pond. I couldn’t back up and I was using a 300mm lens so I just took the shot. I was glad I did, it was one of my last duck photos of the year.


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MALLARD ON THE MOVE

MallardYou’re never alone in the woods. There’s a well trodden path in the reserve that sees a lot of foot traffic, both human and duck. Looking around we often see a mallard following us (or maybe just enjoying a walk too 😊).


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BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT HERON

BCNH-2When the Black-crowned night herons first return in the spring, we usually spot them high up in the trees. If we see one at the water’s edge it usually takes flight. The one pictured here was photographed later in the season and the fishing was good. It looked up to stare at us and then continued about its business.

BCNH


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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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DRAGONFLIES (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS

DragonfliesWhen I took the photograph of this mating pair, I didn’t notice the other insects in the frame until I downloaded the image. I did a larger crop to show the damselfly on the far left, and a few other hangers-on on the tree stump. It was a busy time of year for these insects.

Dragonflies-2


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PILEATED WOODPECKER

Pileated WoodpeckerThe pileated woodpecker, native to North America is also its largest woodpecker. We heard the bird excavating the tree before we saw it. These loud, colourful birds populate our woods year round although we see them most often in April, as they begin nest building, and into the fall. Other animals benefit from their home construction. As these woodpeckers nest only once in the same tree, other birds and animals will often move in and feed on the insects the woodpecker has disturbed.


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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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ALL EYES

Squirrel

While walking through the woods if you feel eyes on you, chances are one of these characters is watching you approach. Sometimes the squirrel will run off but often it will remain and and fix you with a look, like this one did.


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RING-BILLED GULLS (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Ring billed gullsThese medium sized gulls are sociable birds and opportunistic feeders. Ring-billed gulls often congregate in large numbers so I was surprised to see these two on their own. The first photo is of a breeding adult, the second is a non-breeding gull. I’m not overly fond of gulls but seeing them close up, they can be admired for their bearing and striking eyes.

On another note, this is the 4th Anniversary of my blog. 🎂

Ring billed gulls-2


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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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SINGLE SPARROW

SparrowThese common sparrows are often found in groups. You might appreciate their song but don’t often really consider them. This little sparrow enjoying the water on a hot day didn’t mind my presence, so I took the opportunity to admire him and take some shots.


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TOP OF THE TEASEL

Mimic FlyMimic flies are fun to photograph. If I had my macro lens with me, I would have concentrated on the insect but as I didn’t I took the shot I could. I rarely carry more than one lens when I go out so if I see something worth taking I’ll give it a go.


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BEETLE (TWO PHOTOGRAPHS)

Beetle-2Another insect post. I miss these vibrant summer colours. We see a lot of white and grey in the winter but when the sun does shine, the sky never looked bluer.
These beetles tend to climb on long grass stalks which make for an attractive background and gather in groups too so photo opportunities are abundant.

Beetle