Fisheye Fun in Phoenix

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This is the Water Room at Arizona Falls which I’ve blogged about before (1, 2). I thought I would take a little break from taking/posting bird and butterfly photos and play around with my fisheye lens for a couple days.

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Arizona Falls is a public art project as well as a working hydroelectric plant providing power to 150 households. It’s a great place for photography and has a lot of interesting angles and features itself so using a fisheye only enhances that.

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Not too far away is Papago Park which I have also written about numerous times.

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With a fisheye, where you center the image vertically and horizontally affects how “bulged out” the image will be. If it’s centered horizontally, it will not be as distorted and will just provide a wide angle of view.

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If you enlarge the above photo (a lot), you can see our downtown area with tall buildings, not quite skyscrapers. And here are a few more shots in a business district close to my house.

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No birds! But you can actually see a couple ducks and a turtle in the office complex pond above.

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Papago Winter

Snowy 1

Snowy 2Snowy Egret

These photos were from a recent late afternoon visit to Papago Park in Phoenix.

PhoebeBlack Phoebe

Ring-necked Duck Head

Ring-necked DuckRing-Necked Duck Drake

CormorantNeotropic Cormorant

Snowy 3Snowy and Cormy

Shoveler ReedsNorthern Shoveler

Papago has a lot of reeds which can make for interesting patterns on the water.

GallinuleCommon Gallinule, immature

GrebePied-Billed Grebe

I went there in search of these lifers, Northern Pintails, and I found them. There were 3 drakes and a popular hen.

Pintail 5

Pintail 1

Pintail Couple

Pintail 4

Pintail 3

Pintail 2

After posing nicely, they swam off into the sunset.

4 Pintails

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Summer at Papago

Grebe Foot

Aren’t these the cutest things? They are Pied-billed Grebe babies. They look like something you’d see in the Galapagos instead of Papago Park Ponds, where they actually were. So here’s a few too many photos I took of them a couple days ago.

Grebe Adult

This is an adult, above. The males and females are indistinguishable.

2 Grebes

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Grebe Babe Water

Grebe Eat

Catching lunch with parental supervision

Grebe Ma and Babe

Grebe Nest

There are actually 2 sets of babies. One has 3 babies and they are a little older than another group of 2 babies. Unfortunately, in that group, there were 4 babies until the other day…No one knows what happened.

Grebe Rock

Grebe Walking

“I can swim, I can walk, when can I fly?”

Grebe Water Foot

Ma and Baby

Entertaining as these guys were, and as many local bird photographers who have gathered there over the last couple weeks to see them, there were some other fun birds to see, too.

I never get tired of spotting Green Herons, much smaller birds than you would think.

GH

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There were many punk juveniles there with their little spiked head feathers.

Gallinule 4

Common Gallinule

He/she felt like dancing. I also saw a chick with her but it scampered into the reeds before I could get a shot.

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Killdeer

Flameskimmer

Flame Skimmer Dragonfly

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Spring at Papago

Green Heron 2

Green Heron

Cooper's 2

Cooper's 6

Cooper's

Sharp-Shinned or Cooper’s Hawk (hard to distinguish)

Gallinule

Common Gallinule

Pond Slider

Red-Eared Pond Slider

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Yellow-Rumped Warbler

Egret 2

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Great Egret

Scaup

Lesser Scaup

Ring-Necked Duck

Ring-Necked Duck

Grebe 3

Grebe

Pied-Billed Grebe

Flicker 2

Northern Flicker

Cactus Flower

Green Heron

I spent the first day of spring at Papago Park and made a brief visit to the Desert Botanical Garden, which is in the park. Not much luck there as it was later in the day and packed with people but the ponds at the park made for a decent day of birding. I have a 3-day weekend and I’m planning to go shooting somewhere everyday. More photos to come, I hope…

Happy Spring!

Expert Birders

Sveng and Bird Books

I share an interest with our cats, maybe on a slightly different level, but we do have a common pastime. Meet the Birding Team:

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The indoor researchers: Marbles, Google, Jessi, in the top row, left to right, and the field team: Ebony, Ivory, and Edie (the Triplets), in the 2nd row, and Svengali, Stripey Laurie, and Winky, in the 3rd row. Click on photo to see how exceptionally cute they all are.

Here are some birds I’ve seen in this last week since returning to sunny Phoenix, in my yard, my ‘hood, Papago Park, the Franciscan Renewal Center, and a small lake at a nearby office complex.

Black Phoebe

Black Phoebe

CW Casa

Cactus Wren

Canada Goose Flying

Canada Goose

Green Heron 2

Green Heron

Hybrid

Mallard Hybrid (I think)

Wigeon

American Wigeon

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Northern Mockingbird

GC Casa

Gambel’s Quail

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Anna’s Hummingbird