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PIC OF THE WEEK: 06/16/14 • PREVIOUS WEEKNEXT WEEKALL 2014 PICS

Bird Pic Of The Week

Common Loon

(Gavia immer)

Where: Door County, WI • Chambers Island

Notes: Upon graduating from high school I was treated to a three week trip backpacking in Wisconsin and Minnesota, plus a full week of canoeing in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area (BWCA) that border’s Canada. Nearly every morning on that journey my days began with the flute-like serenades of these large diving birds birds. Those sounds made famous by the movie “On Golden Pond,” have a certain melodic flow that is almost haunting, yet serene at the same time. Hearing that call on Chamber’s Island recently, brought back memories of simple days long ago, when the worst of my worries was how to get my pup-tent to stay standing in the moss covered stony ground. Now many years later, hosted by generous friends, I found myself in the northern mid-west again. Early that morning from high atop the steep bank overlooking Green Bay, we spotted this distant pair of Loons fairly close to shore, making their way in our direction. I already had my camera on the tripod, so I quickly turned and ran ahead toward the next farthest set of steps that lead down to the beach. I declined down the maze of steps and lowered the tripod to its lowest position. Fortunately a gap in the short dunes and bayside grasses provided me some cover as I waited. The wind was unusually nonexistent that morning and the water’s surface was smooth and glassy. The soft ambient light in this image was provided by the hilltop forest canopy behind me, producing an almost silhouette effect on the subjects. Eventually the pair made their way northward until they were right in front of me. They kept in close proximity to each other as they occasionally dove for fish in the relatively shallow waters. These birds can dive as deep as two hundred feet and stay under for up to three minutes at a time. Common Loons, currently designated as the “Great Northern Loon” by the International Ornithological Committee, proposed the name change as a compromise because it is called the “Great Northern Diver” in Eurasia.

Small Bird Photo 1

Small Bird Photo 2

iPhotoBirds Print Common Loon (COLO-H-5161)

Archival quality fine art print, standard size for easy framing, hand signed by the artist, with white matte, backing board and clear protective cover. Image cropping may vary slightly depending on print size.
Print Size: 5" x 7" (with 8" x 10" Matte) . . . $20.00
Print Size: 8" x 10" (with 11" x 14" Matte) . . . $40.00
Print Size: 11" x 14" (with 16" x 20" Matte) . . . $75.00

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Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark III • Canon 400mm f-5.6 Prime USM L Series Lens • Canon 1.4X Teleconverter II • Gitzo 3531LS Tripod • Wimberly Head WH-101

Exposure: Shutter Speed = 1/500 second • Aperture = f-11 • Exposure Mode = Aperture Priority • Focus Mode: AiServo • Lens (Focal) Length = 560 mm • ISO = 400 • Aprox. Camera Distance = ~50 Feet • Date Shot: 05-27-14

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