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Category : Photos of the Week

06 Dec 2015

“The Birds of Butterfly World” 12/06/15

Sparkling Violet Ear hummingbird

Yellow Legged HoneycreeperGreetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s images are a continuation of our photo tour last weekend to southeast Florida. Butterfly World in the Ft Lauderdale area was one of our favorite places. Within the large butterfly aviary, there were also lots of tropical birds from all over the world.
Below are my three favorites that I was able to photograph. Since there are no tripods allowed inside the aviary, all images were shot hand held with the Canon 7D Mark II and the 100-400 lens, ISO 1600-3200.

I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike

29 Nov 2015

“Enchanting Butterflies” 11/29/15

Piano Key butterfly

Piano Key Butterfly by Michele copy

The Owl butterfly

Piano Key ButterfliesGreetings from southwest Florida,

I hope everyone has enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday. This week’s images are from this past weekend. After a wonderful Thanksgiving with friends and family, Michele and I headed out early Friday morning for a three day photo safari. Our trip started in Fort Lauderdale at Butterfly World and ended in Flamingo at the bottom of the Everglades. I have always wanted to explore this area of Florida, and we enjoyed numerous wildlife preserves and rookeries along the way. I would highly recommend Butterfly World in Ft Lauderdale. With over 20,000 butterflies flying free at one time, (per one of the staff), it is a tropical paradise. They have butterflies from all over the world and it is a family run business. We enjoyed it so much, that we were there for about 5 hours taking pictures. Below are just a few of the many images we took along the way of this photo adventure. Other places we visited were Wakodahatchee, Green Cay, and Loxahatchee national wildlife refuge. We also spent a day in the Everglades; it’s such an amazing place. We will have many more images in the weeks ahead, but for now I hope you like this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike and Michele

22 Nov 2015

“Portrait of the Caracara” 11/22/15

Crested Cararcara 2

Crested Caracara 3

Crested Caracara email copyGreetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s image is one of a unique bird of prey, the Crested Caracara. Found mainly throughout the central part of Florida, this is a bird that I have wanted to photograph for a very long time. A couple of weeks ago, I finally got a chance to get some close up shots. With it’s beautiful markings, it was one I was lucky enough to have a few moments to photograph. This bird, along with the Peregrin falcon from last week’s photo of the week, will be one of many that you will be able to photograph on my Central Florida Birding workshop. For more information please email me for dates and times of this great workshop.

I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike

15 Nov 2015

“Falconry, with the Peregrin” 11/15/15

Greetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s images are from a recent trip to central Florida where I had the privilege to watch a Florida Falconer fly his beautiful Peregrin falcon. Being an avid falconer for over 40 years myself, it brought back a rush of memories as I watched in awe of this beautiful bird in flight. One of the things that was amazing to see was the use of a drone to lure the falcon up into the sky. Once the falcon reached a certain height, she then hit the lure that otherwise would have been swung by the falconer. Upon impact of the lure, it broke away easily and had a parachute attached to create drag so the falcon could not fly off with it. From there they both gently floated to the ground and the falcon enjoyed a quail wing that was attached to the lure as part of her reward. Falconry has come a long way! For those of you that are interested, I will be adding a Bird of prey workshop starting January 2016 and running through the middle of April. There will be lots of opportunities to photograph raptors in flight, along with a lot of other birds such as eagles, owls, hawks, and even Crested Caracaras perched in natural settings.

I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike

08 Nov 2015

“Lovers Key Images of nature” 11/08/15

Greetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s image is from Lovers Key State Park. During the past week, Lovers Key hosted it’s first annual “Images of Nature Week.” They had a week long event with different photographers who came to the park to offer instruction on multiple photography topics. I was fortunate to be one of these photographers and hosted a two hour class on macro photography. I had a great group of participants, and we covered a lot of subject matter from photographing flowers to shells, and even some insects that were close by. It was a great time, and I had a lot of fun. Afterwards, I took some time to photograph some birds along the beach with another photographer and we saw this beautiful bird called a Marbled Godwit. This was a first time sighting for me and the warm glow of the sun on the water made the perfect setting for the photograph. Lovers Key will be offering this event again next year with Clyde Butcher as the Keynote speaker.

I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike

01 Nov 2015

“More from central Florida” 11/01/15

Greetings from Southwest Florida,
This week’s images are a continuation from last week when Michele and I spent 4 days in central Florida photographing. This first image is from Hillsboro State Park. If the palm trees weren’t all around, I would have thought I was back in the Smokey Mountains. Seeing running water like this was a treat for sure. The other images were from Lake Wales at Bok Tower Botanical gardens. Bok Tower is a magnificent place with lots of mature landscaping. I think it is one of the best botanical gardens we have ever seen. There were lots of Monarch butterflies to see in the gardens, presumably making their winter pilgrimage to warmer climates of Mexico. We had a great time in that part of the state and we look forward to sharing more images in the weeks ahead.
I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.
Have a blessed week.
Mike
25 Oct 2015

“Michele’s photo’s” 10/25/15

Greetings from Southwest Florida,
This week’s images I am proud to say are not mine, but were taken by my wife this weekend as we celebrated our anniversary at Circle B Ranch in Lakeland Florida. It is by far, one of our favorite places to visit and I gave Michele a new Canon camera with a zoom lens as an anniversary gift. It didn’t take long before we were capturing some nice images side by side, and I couldn’t think of a better gift to me than sharing this time with her.
I hope you enjoy this week’s images by Michele.
Have a blessed week.
Mike
18 Oct 2015

“The Madagascar day gecko” 10/18/15

Greetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s image is of one of the most popular characters on television. It is the Madagascar Day Gecko, alias the walking, talking, Geico representative. This day gecko, native to Madagascar, is now also thriving in south Florida particularly in the Florida Keys. The females typically lay two eggs at a time, and when they hatch out they look like this little guy. I recently added him to my collection for my upcoming macro workshops, and he made a fun subject to photograph this weekend sitting on a gerber daisy. The adults grow to a maximum of 7-8 inches, but some may grow to be a little larger. So the next time you are in the Florida Keys, take a look around and see if you can spot one of these little green gems.

Hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike

11 Oct 2015

“Colors of Fall” 10/11/15

Greetings from southwest Florida,

This week’s images are from our home state of Kentucky, and one from a state park in Tennessee. With some cooler weather ahead here in Florida, there is no replacing the beautiful fall colors of the mid-west and northeast. I really do miss those few weeks when the woods and hillsides are ablaze with fall color. But today we enjoyed watching a pair of Bald eagles soaring and going through their courtship dives on Sanibel Island, signaling the nesting season is only a few weeks away. So, for us, the fall is more like spring, and as we get ready for all the migratory birds moving south, there is sure to be great photography days ahead.

I hope you enjoy this week’s photos.

Have a blessed week.
Mike