We had tentatively scheduled posting the Round 6 stories (It’s A Wonderful Life) today, but that’s now likely for tomorrow evening or Monday morning. One writer is traveling, another is not ready . . . and, in a first, I’m actually done ahead of time.

I can say with confidence that very few people will like my story (even fewer than usual, if that’s even possible) . . . but you’ll have to wait until I publish it to judge for yourself.

Instead, today, I share a few recently recorded videos. Normally, I use the P900 for video recording because it’s a little easier, but these videos were shot with the D7500. They were shot in 4K, but I downsampled them for publication. I mean, if they were amazing, I probably would have posted them at 4K, but these are just casual captures.

As mentioned, these posts are a chance for me to get my D100 and D200 out, make sure the batteries are charged and there’s a fresh CF memory card waiting to receive photos, and go out and shoot with them old workhorses.

This is all about the D100 coupled with the Nikon 80-400mm zoom (a lens from around the same era, about 20 years ago). Unlike last time, I picked some easier subjects to shoot . . . maybe.

D100 — Find the Hummingbird

You thought you were safe, didn’t you? Just because I’m shooting an ancient camera, it don’t mean I can’t take decent photos. Or, at least, no worse than usual.

So, on this day, I sat outside in the patio and watched hummingbirds swarm the feeders. It will be interesting to see how much longer they will be doing it since they started early, and it’s 18/31 of the way through August.

Two things about these photos. One, they are cropped, but because the D100 is only a 6MP camera (which, at the time, was quite the luxury), the originals are not as big as what I get from the D7500, and hence the crops are smaller.

And, two, while I mentioned hummingbirds and other birds, those are not the only things I photographed. When the photo departs from those two subjects, I’ll let you know. For instance, the photo above is not of a bird, but a wasp.

A wasp that was competing with a hummingbird and keeping it at bay . . .

In Thursday’s post documenting Wednesday’s Erculean photography effort, I posted a few photos snapped with my Nikon P900 camera. I don’t use the camera as much primarily because most of my subjects are fairly close. Also, because I’m sitting on a chair on my patio, the weight of the equipment isn’t a concern.

Still, I usually have the P900 out there with me, and for every ten or so photos with the D7500, I’ll snap one or two photos with the P900.

Gray Catbird

The advantage of shooting with the P900 is that I don’t have to crop the photo much (if any) to fill the frame with the subject.

As mentioned in Part 1, I’ve been taking a lot of photos of birds.

The 100% Crop series is just at it sounds. Each photo shows a bird cropped from a larger photo. Most of the crops will be 100%, but not all.

Regardless, the photos will be fairly large close-ups of the birds. And, what better way to begin than with a Bald Eagle?

For photos at 100% crop (the above photo isn’t), if your browser window is set to full screen, and if your screen is large enough, when you click on the photo, it will fill the screen. If your cursor shows as a circle with a ‘plus’ sign, it means your screen resolution is smaller than the photo, in which case, you can click on the photo to further zoom in to 100% resolution.

The above shot was taken from the car. Even at 300mm zoom (450 effective), the bird is fairly small. I can crop the image and it’s still small.

Of course, in SmugMug, you can view the first photo at full resolution and it’ll be a tad larger . . . but, I also ran the photo through Topaz GigaPixel and doubled the resolution . . .

On a recent comment, oneowner and I discussed Topaz’s Legacy plugins . . . which prompted me to play with a few I haven’t used in a while. The photos I used to play with the plugins were those of the recent bird post (HERE).

The first candidate was the Gray Catbird . . .

My aim was to transform photos into drawings. I think the above is me using Impression 2. I liked the results, so I continued.

I’ve been taking a lot of photos of birds. A lot. Many more than I can possibly post unless I dedicate most of my time to posting bird photos (not a bad thing, that, but it would be at the expense of other stuff).

On the other hand, as each day goes by, I fall behind and the inventory gets larger. And so, I decided to do occasional posts sampling the photos in my collection.

The 100% Crop series is just at it sounds. Each photo shows a bird at full resolution (100% crop). For example, here’s a Gray Catbird. Also, it will typically fill the frame with little of the surroundings shown other than what’s in the background.

If your browser window is set to full screen, and if your screen is large enough, when you click on the photo, it will fill the screen. If your cursor shows as a circle with a ‘plus’ sign, it means your screen resolution is smaller than the photo, in which case, you can click on the photo to further zoom in to 100% resolution.

Try it; I’ll wait before adding the rest of the photos.

Let’s begin with THIS<<link notice from the Illinois DNR. Basically, it’s a warning about the EA H5N1 strain of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) currently impacting some wild and domestic bird species. As a result, they recommend stopping the use of bird feeders and birdbaths until the end of May. I’ll have additional important information at the end of the post. (See what I did there? I used the ole “Details at 11:00” ruse to maybe have a few additional readers stick around until the end.)

I like birds, so on April 22nd I pulled all my feeders and emptied my birdbaths. But, not before I sat outside for a few hours photographing birds from my covered patio. This then is a post harkening back to the posts of yore, when I used to publish long posts with lots of photos. Posts that few people read, and even fewer readers stuck with it to the end.

If I use all the photos I post-processed, I’ll end up with 104 photos in this post (I had nearly 300 photos), but because some photos are similar to each other, I’ll probably have a tad fewer than that . . . but still more than what current readers might be used to.

Right! Let’s begin with a White-throated Sparrow . . .

I’ve been snapping a fair — maybe even more than fair — number of photos of the birds visiting my backyard feeders. I put up the feeder in early December and I now have quite the number of mediocre photos, along with a few decent photos, and a few I quite like.

Of course, I’m way behind in documenting them, and I doubt I’ll ever catch up, but, what I can do — and will do in this post — is share a few photos of birds all doing the same thing . . . looking at me.

All of these photos are taken from inside the house through double-pane glass. There’s a preferred window I use because it’s fixed (meaning, it doesn’t open) and hence has no screen interfering with photographing the birds. All I have to do is remove about seven slats from the blinds and I have a nice unobstructed view of the patio and feeders. For the record, all the previously shared feeder photos are shot through that window.

All of the birds’ names are linked to a description page. Click on the name and the webpage will open in a new tab or window. Click on the photo, and the photo will open in a new window or tab.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

Welcome to the third bird feeders bird post. This post has photos (Nikon D7500) and videos (Nikon P900) from December 16, 2021. Also, videos from the 15th.

The 16th was another warmish — if wet — day, and I sat outside for a few hours watching the wildlife. I shot 99 photos, and I managed to pare them down to 64.

Because I’m still working out the whole embedding thing, these will be loaded as I usually do, which means I’ll have galleries to help readers speed through the photos as opposed to having readers wear out the scroll wheel of their mouse. I calculated that based on the amount of storage I have left, the actual number of photos I can upload might be as many as 4,500 (depending on the sizes). That’s more than I’d estimated before, so that’s nice.

I’m also breaking with tradition and not presenting the photos in the order they were shot.

Tufted Titmouse using my Nikon D7500

Much like the last post, this is not a super-great photo of a Tufted Titmouse. What can I say? Sometimes, my luck runs out and my lack of talent shines through, even if I’m using the Nikon D7500 with the excellent 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. I could blame the poor lighting and the rain, but it’s all on me. However, I got luckier after that . . .

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

Welcome to the second bird feeders bird post.

The weather having been unusually warm (we had a few days in the 70s and a number of days in the middle and upper 60s … in December) I have lots of photos to share . . . and if it’s anything like my cruise photos effort, I’ll probably finish sharing them sometime in late 2024.

Overall, I’ve been pleased with the bird attendance at the feeders, this being winter and all, and I look forward to more of a showing once Spring rolls around, which, at this rate, will probably be in the middle of January.

Sneak peek of a Tufted Titmouse using my Nikon P900

I’ll have more off those guys in future posts. They are cagey and seldom sit still long enough for a shot when at the feeders, hence why the P900’s long zoom came in handy for that opportunity.

I don’t remember if I mentioned it, but — weather permitting — I sit outside with a cup of coffee and the two cameras (Nikon P900 and Nikon D7500 with 70-200mm f/2.8 lens) for a few hours during the time the birds are most active. Even if there’s little avian activity, I still shoot photos of shrubs, rocks, leaves, etc.

Most of those photos get blown away (yes, I occasionally get rid of photos), but what I’m doing as I wait for birds, is trying different settings, learning what the cameras can and cannot do, and finding the best settings for the conditions.

American Robin photographed using my Nikon P900

And, what are the conditions?

Well, this set of photos are samples from two days — December 14 and 16 — and both days were overcast and featured an occasional raindrop or two (a few raindrops are visible on that photo, and you can see water drops on the bird’s tail).

In that particular photo, the bird was about twenty feet away. This next bird was about 160 feet away.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

A little over a week ago, I broke down and bought a few bird feeders.

In Michigan, I used to have multiple feeders. In Colorado, I sought to duplicate my bird-feeding habits but ran into a problem with field mice getting into the house and garage (field mice droppings contain some nasty stuff), not to mention one had to bring feeders in at night lest one attracted bears.

I’m pretty sure I won’t have bear problems in my backyard, and I’m hoping field mice stay in the fields. Wait, I take that back. There was a confirmed bear sighting about 30 miles north of us (LINK).

Fortuitous capture of a White-throated Sparrow using my Nikon P900

Anyway, that White-throated Sparrow was one of the first birds to arrive at the feeders.

Well, actually, on the ground. I spread some no-waste feed on the ground to attract the ground feeders. The thinking was that other birds would then investigate.

Slate-colored Dark-eyed Junco photographed using my Nikon P900

The other first arrivals were one of my favorite bird species, Dark-eyed Junco. I’ll have more to say about them below.

I should note a few things about me, cameras, and birds. Because the weather has been warm enough (if a bit cloudy and wet), I sat outside for a few hours at a time just so I could observe and photograph the birds. The feeder is about 15 feet away from where I sit, but the edge of the patio — where those two birds were photographed — is about 25 feet away. My neighbor’s bushes are about 45 feet from my chair.

So, there’s me, my coffee, and both the P900 and the D7500 with either the 70-200mm or the 70-300mm lenses on it. You might thus notice a difference between various photos, with the DSLR photos perhaps (but not always) offering better quality. And, that’s all I’ll probably say about photography and cameras.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the Top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow activates the option for a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

We begin with a fairly easy “find the hummingbird” . . .

. . . followed by an extremely easy “find the hummingbird” . . .

Letsee . . . what to talk about today?

For them not interested in reading, you can see the photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery.  

For a SmugMug slideshow, click HERE<<link. When you click the link, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button at the bottom-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: clicking the PLAY arrow will run a full-screen slideshow. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

So, more delays to the Deadly Sins Challenge. One of the writers had technical (software) issues, and the other writer is writing a novella covering all seven sins and needs to split out Lust into a stand-alone story. At least that’s my understanding of it.

They messed me up a bit, so if my story sucks, blame them. You see, I do my best writing under pressure; pressure of a looming deadline. So on the 13th, I buckled down and wrote nearly half of the story that was due on the 14th. But before I finished, I heard Perry and Gary we not going to meet the deadline . . . and I lost all my inspiration, drive, and desire to write.

For them not interested in reading, you can see the bird photos in THIS<<link SmugMug Gallery. 

When you click the links, it will open in a new window, and you have two options:
1) Manually scroll through the photos by clicking the “<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos.
2) There’s a PLAY/PAUSE button near the top-left of the screen with the transition set at about 5 seconds. Note: Above the play/pause button there’s the option to go full screen. Most of these look really good viewed full screen. You can then still use the”<” and “>” symbols to the left or right of the photos (this will pause the slideshow).

If you want the full experience, keep reading.

That surely don’t look nuthin’ like a bird . . .

Good catch, grasshopper. Them be one of the first flower pots we be done did this year. We’re going to limit the number of pots we’ll populate this year . . . maybe.