Thursday, June 11, 2009

A paddle for a pole...anyone? (SWF)

Double-crested Cormorants
Phalacrocorax auritus

In many ways, a similar day at Dillon, from April’s unwoken landscape, to this day in June—the sky, clouded and white, as we floated out beyond the noise of the beach onto gunmetal water, Red Canoe’s first voyage of the season.
Barely clearing the broad sandy bottom, we made our way to the narrow deeper channel, access to the river upstream, while, with each firm stroke forward against the shallow middle water, great fish swirled beneath us. At times, it would have been easier to stand and step out, drag Red Canoe and its duffels of snacks and drinks past the chocolate brown, ankle deep swirls. But what couldn’t be seen, and what darted ahead with each surge, carving giant arcs with large dorsal fins as bow fishermen silently launched arrows in pursuit, kept us firmly seated, feet dry, poling until we could paddle again.

Great Blue Heron
Ardea herodias


Once finding the channel, the water cleared, allowing boats to pass easily, and us to escape beyond them, further upstream.
Cottonwoods, casting small fluffy seeds to float like snow upon the surface, stood back from the water’s edge.
Willows drank at the shore.
And, every so often, a tent peeked out from tall grass—its access road, quiet, paralleling the lake edge. A pickup parked on uneven ground.


On this first stretch of summer warmth, the water is welcome—drawing all sorts to its teeming basin.
But it seems we are in the minority, without bait, bobber or bow.






Even the birds are fishing.





Common Terns on log, adult with juvenile,
Sterna hirundo


Dillon Reservoir

We watched Common Terns and a Caspian Tern fish in the shallows of the lake at Dillon State Park. Scanning several feet above the surface, they would suddenly turn and drop, plunging vertically into the water to grab fish, then again rise to fly on.


See more Skywatch here.

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25 comments:

Eric(Holland) said...

Very nice pictures, tha last one is a Skywatch picture if u look in the water, Well done...

Have A Nice Skywatch Friday!!

Greetings from the Netherlands

Rob Ripma said...

Awesome shots, I really like the terns!

Pearl Maple said...

Lovely collection of photos for Sky Watch Friday. Thanks for sharing your lovely views with us all.

Guy D said...

These are all great photos, the last one is my favourite, great reflections.

Have a fantastic weekend
Guy
Regina In Pictures

Me and my puppies said...

I, also, enjoy being out in kayaks on the water. So easy to be with nature and the sky!

Michelle Johnson said...

Sounds like you and your family had a nice day out. What great views you've shared today. Beautiful. Have a nice day.

Jeri said...

Great shots of some very interesting birds. Love that reflection of the sky in the last shots!

EcoRover said...

Nice pics--especially the tern in flight.

P-TER said...

Amazing shots !
Beutiful!
Gr.
P-TER

giggles said...

Terns?? In Ohio???????? I think of them strictly as sea/shore birds? Huh! Now I know, I guess.....

Anne-Berit said...

Very good photos,liked them all!

Barb said...

Hi Nina,
We have a Dillon Lake,too, here in Summit County, CO - however, no Herons or Terns! I loved the picture of the adult Tern landing.

Pear tree cottage! said...

Nina, if I listen very carefully I can hear what you hear out there on the lake I am sure.........beautiful!

Lee-ann

Tara R. said...

Such serene landscape. Beautiful shots.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

It sounds like you had to work hard to enjoy this beautiful surrounding.

We got to see a Roseate Spoonbill here in Indiana today. A first for the State so of course a first for my state list too. AMAZING to see here.

Karen said...

Great shots...

The reflection of the sky in that last shot is very cool..

Arija said...

What wonderful bird shots, and a nice sky reflection as well.

ascu75 aka Don said...

Great shots XXX Don

Larry D said...

Great photos of an wonderful day.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

lovely reflection of the sky in that last shot!

Lynn said...

Beautiful. I like the reflections.

Wren said...

Even if it's Skywatch Friday, my favorite photo is the cormorants. I first thought your title referred to them - I could imagine one jumping up and shouting "Land ho!" - as if a cormorant would be interested in habitat that didn't provide fish.

nina at Nature Remains. said...

My favorite is the cormorants, too, Wren.
Their elegant forms, silhouetted against the light water's surface, made me decide to try that one in black and white.
But it certainly was a day for fish-loving birds!

onangelwings said...

Those are beautiful shots.

Deborah Godin said...

Another magical journey your words and images have taken us on. The cottonwood snow on the water is so beautiful, I don't want to stop looking!