Saturday, March 12, 2011

Middle Creek Tundra Swans

The first rays of the morning sun falls across Tundra Swans awaking to a new day

Tundra Swans stop in at Middle Creek on their way northward to the summer breeding grounds.  It was estimated that somewhere around eight thousand were present during our recent visit.

Shortly after sun-up the swans began flying off the lake.  The sun was still low in the eastern sky lighting these birds from below when I captured this flight image.


The low angle sun causes this tundra swan to glow as it passes over my position


Tundra Swans gracefully coming in for a landing

Middle Creek, located in Pennsylvania's Amish Country, is an excellent place to visit during late winter.  The incredible flocks of waterfowl are a sight to behold.  Tens of thousands of snow geese, thousands of Canada Geese, thousands of Tundra Swans and numerous duck species abound providing photographic opportunities galore.  Middle Creek is an excellent location for flight shots however it is not particularly note worthy if close-up waterfowl images are your goal. 

Middle Creek is managed by the Pennsylvania Game Commission with waterfowl hunting in mind.  Numerous shooting blinds are located in the fields surrounding the shallow water lake but no such accommodation are provided for the casual visitor or photographer.  Visitors are restricted from nearly all of the management area except for a narrow area along the roadways.  This area is clearly marked with a single strand wire fence forming the line one is not allow to cross.  With only a very few exception potholes and other waterfowl habitat is out sight or out of reach of even the longest telephoto lenses.  The few exceptions that do exist occur along the road where viewers and photographer congregate.  Even this limited people pressure results in the waterfowl moving away from the people requiring the use of long telephoto lenses to acquire a photograph that even remotely resembles a waterfowl portrait.   





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18 comments:

richard l coy said...

Once again Coy awesome photos thanks for sharing with us

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

Wonderful! Stunning photos of the swans, I would love to see some come through here.

Leedra said...

The Tundra Swan photograph is wonderful. I instantly thought of the movie "Notebook".

Lois Evensen said...

Ohhhh, just gorgeous! Just love the first one and all the rest are terrific, too.

Robin said...

Coy, wonderful shots. There's just something about swans that makes them special!

John S. Mead said...

Kudos for another great set of shots! I especially like the overhead shot.... Always a pleasure to see your posts!

EG Wow said...

The light is fabulous! We haven't seen any migrating birds overhead yet but I have heard a few geese.

Chris said...

The flight shot is sumptuous Coy, love it, but all the other are splendid... Well done:

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

THe light on these birds is exceptional.I love that glow.

MÜGE TEKİL said...

Very beautiful photos of very elegant birds!

http://modaninkuslari.blogspot.com

JimB said...

Coy

Good work--wish we could talk the PGC into issuing photographer permits like the duck blind permits!

Frank said...

Another super post Coy.

Always seems a bit one-sided when these organisations won't allow watchers to get a bit closer to enjoy the wildlife.

Lynette Killam said...

Wonderful captures, Coy...that light is spectacular! I have yet to get the perfect bird-in-flight photo, so I much enjoyed yours...

Lynette
Imagination lane

Elaine said...

A magical series, Coy, but the first photo really draws me in. Well done!

eileeninmd said...

Awesome series of photos from Middle Creek. It is an awesome place to see the ducks, geese and swans. I am not into hunting and I only enjoy viewing the wildlife.

Gary said...

Great in flight shots!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Montanagirl said...

Excellent images as always. Love that first one and really like the last one a lot. (P.S. They're all nice!)

HANNIBAL said...

Wowser Coy! You have produced some great stuff these past days! These are really cool! I've been trying (but not succeeding) for some decent flight shots for years! Their patience is greater than mine!