I thought I would scope out a new place today and headed to the Glendale Recharge Facility. This is a group of ponds that have a dual purpose – the reclamation of water and the provision of habitat for wildlife. I got there at about 5.30 am but could already see that the ponds were very exposed. With a 300mm lens the birds were well out of range… and at no time were they likely to come closer to this mad Englishman who was trying to swat at the multitude of mosquitos that were exploring me. As a result I decided to look at a photo opportunity where the bird worked to accentuate the image, rather than play the main subject. At first I thought that the distant lights would make for an interesting background, but as the sun came up the red earth that surrounds the ponds came alive and the scene was set.
With this shot safely in the memory card I left the Recharge Ponds to the mosquitos and decided to take a drive past Tres Rios. I was not expecting too much, I usually find the birds here to be a little nervous. As a result I have learned to accept that my visits here are not always fruitful!
As I drove up to the area I spotted a tree full of Turkey Vultures – although I was not able to get too close I did get a couple of shots. Walking past the ponds I was really startled by the sounds of Bullfrogs as I disturbed their siesta and they made their high-pitched croak and leapt into the water – a case of both the frogs and I jumping out of our skin! All except one ‘hopped off’, but I was pleased as I have always wanted to get a photo of a semi-submerged frog and this was a good first attempt.
As I turned away from the pond I almost stepped on this little fellow (about 3 feet long). He didn’t seem bothered in the slightest and was quite happy to let me circle him until I was in front of him – then I laid on my stomach to get down to his level to get this shot. I wish I had used a slightly deeper depth of field, but c’est la vie!