Sunset on Cape Cod

We took a trip down to Barnstable, Ma on Cape Cod this last weekend. It was a rainy overcast weekend, but fortunately the sun came out briefly for a sunset.One of my favorite times at the beach is that time of last light that illuminates the ocean and the beach.  Barnstable beach is on the bay side of Cape Cod so gets a nice sunset. Our dogs really enjoy playing and chasing their ball on the beach. Though they did have some question about the quality of the drinking water.

The last light looking out toward Provincetown was a rich color of purples and blues. I especially liked the color of the weed beds in their winter state.Sunset over Barnstable Beach

A new baby lamb on a cold Vermont morning

It was down to 10 below last night and just about as cold the night before. For reasons known only to the ewes they seem to prefer the really cold nights to have their lambs. Our latest lamb was up , cleaned off and nursing by the time I discovered him in our lower barn. I moved him and his mother up to our more enclosed upper barn , which also houses the chickens so the new family would

be out of the wind and have a heat lamp. Junior is doing well these are a few pics from this morning.

Snow Tracks, and Owls in the north woods of Vermont

Walking down to my lower field this morning I discovered a set of tracks in the freshly fallen snow. At first I could not identify them. The snow was still falling and they were partially obscured, not really something to photograph and I assumed they were perhaps a weasel. After I put out the hay and grain for the sheep and pony I looked closer and realized that the tracks did not continue. They started at one spot and ended at another. That rules out a lot of animals. Also, came during the night. So looking closer I could see some of the wing marks. I enjoy solving the small puzzles  on the farm, an owl had flown down almost caught a mouse or mole, done a little exploring then lifted of into the night.

Barred Owl on a winter afternoon in Vermont

In walking my lower fields in the winter I occasionally come across the signs of the night time hunting activities of these owls as they catch their prey under the snow. As I was returning up my hill off in the distance I spotted my night visitor.

Barred Owl in February snow storm in Vermont

A barred owl off in the distance watching me. It is nice to see these birds in the woods and the fields. I look forward to hearing their hoots as they start their courtship this spring.

Creating with moonlight

One of my passions is photographing moonlight. Magic happens when the full moon rises above the horizon .  It can be the winter moon or the supermoon, of last year.

Full moon rising

A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world. ~Oscar Wilde

And then there is the full moon rising over the ocean in Maine. This is from York Beach, a moonrise to remember.

Full moon over the Atlantic, York Beach, Maine

Baltimore Orioles and other visitors to our Northern Woods

IBaltimore Oriolen sorting thru images I came upon a picture of a Baltimore Oriole that visited with us last spring, in early May. I was quite taken with this beautiful visitor from the southern lands. I am an avid watcher of the birds around our farm. Now, in late February, we mostly have chickadees and the woodpeckers, but soon others will start to arrive. I have heard that robins are around.

And here is a picture from some other visitors soon to return.

Canada Geese and the Beaver Dam

Canada Geese and the Beaver Dam

I am  looking forward to all the birds as they return to our part of this amazing world of diversity and beauty.  Another one of my favorites is the hummingbirds that start buzzing around when the flowers appear.

Hummingbird with the garden flox

Amazing flyers, especially when two males are squabbling over territorial boundaries.

I am very sobered by reading the article about the loss of habitat and the changing climate conditions that are threatening these amazing fellow species. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/02/120216094724.htm

“Birds are perfect canaries in the coal mine — it’s hard to avoid that metaphor — for showing the effects of global change on the world’s ecosystems and the people who depend on those ecosystems”.

 

Thinking of Spring

Sitting here in Vermont, it is feeling as if mud season will be upon us any day now.  The sap is starting to run, time to start sugaring season. I have many images of both mud and sugar to share with you so stay tuned.

Today , before I start another project I was looking through some images from last years spring, preparing them for stock and fine art usage and came upon this group of images from the annual visit of the Canada Geese to the beaver pond that borders our property. In the background is the neighbor’s Scottish Highlander. Very interesting fellow.

Basketball night

Wednesdays in the winter is my basketball night. I have been playing in my league for 20 years. I have noticed that I am not getting any faster and my shots are not improving. Playing against guys that are 20 or 30 years younger makes one more aware of the aging process and the importance of persistence.  I would not consider myself particularly good, but I do show up, week after week. Running up and down the court for a full hour is a good test of stamina. Or more a measure of how far I am in or out of shape. I was looking through images today and found this one of a dandelion seed pod starting to drop its seeds. Somehow that felt rather apt for this evening.