Radar’s quest for a meal.

Radar’s quest for a meal..

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Radar’s quest for a meal.

cover pic

Please click on images to enlarge for better viewing:

This post is about Radar the Great White Egret.

Recently, my wife and I spent the weekend at Huntington Beach State Park at Murrel’s Inlet, South Carolina.

I love this place as there are many areas to shoot, walk and see interesting things. The causeway almost always presents some sort of photographic opportunity. This trip didn’t fail.

Radar is a Great White Egret that resides at Huntington Beach State Park. He is quite the celebrity. As you will see in some of the photos, he has a tracking device. There is a tracking box and wire so he can be monitored in his travels. From what I hear, he was pushed here from Louisiana after hurricane Katrina.

He seems pretty content in his digs here in South Carolina. To see more about Radar, visit his Facebook page Radar the Egret.

Since I’m new to this blogging thing, please be patient with the layout, etc. I am sure this will improve with time. And if you see any errors, let me know and I will correct them.

~ This post is also to depict the patience it takes to get some interesting photos. I always chuckle when people say, “you have a great camera that takes good pictures”. Yes I do and the lens is even more important. No denying that. “you are always at the right place at the right time”. I try to be because if I’m not, I will miss the action.

This often means long drives, getting up early, staying late, etc. I wouldn’t change a thing. The only thing that makes it difficult is working a very full time job…ah, life 🙂

This particular day was a bit of a challenge as I had to shoot in manual and constantly change settings. Those of you in the know can agree that shooting a big white bird in the bright direct sun can be interesting and frustrating.

snowy hunting

The morning started out slow but as the tide went down, the food became more plentiful. From the other end of the causeway I could see a snowy egret and a great white egret. I decided to check it out. This little snowy (love these guys) was working an area with Radar close by.

the catch

He happened to find an eel and threw it on to the bank. He did a little dance ritual and tried desperately to eat the eel. The eel was having none of that. After several minutes of stomping and making a scene, the onlooker decided to come over.

gimme that

Radar pushed the snowy out of the way and grabbed the eel. I am sure he was thinking that this was an easy steal and an easy meal.

This is also where the light became really harsh and tricky to get the following exposures. Shooting at the right camera settings such as iso, shutter fast enough to eliminate blow out and aperture small enough for detail and dof (depth of field) were interesting. (to me anyway).

the release

Radar thought he would make quick work of this slimy little guy but the eel had different ideas in mind. Remember this whole viewing must have gone on for 20 minutes.

the knot

The eel decided to tie himself into a knot and close Radar’s beak. As an onlooker, I honestly didn’t know if there was going to be a problem with his breathing, etc.

finally

It didn’t take too long before Radar shook the beast loose and was able to get him down.

what the?

But wait! What’s this? He didn’t want to give up that easily ! He wrapped himself around the top of Radar’s beak and looking cross eyed, I am sure Radar was thinking “Really?”

the drink

One final time, he shook him loose and must have stunned the eel enough to get him down. This did take another 5 minutes. Then, of course. The celebratory drink!

I hope you enjoyed this post and if you ever get a chance to visit Huntington Beach State Park in SC, you will not be disappointed. There are several migratory and residential birds such as eagles, osprey, roseate spoonbills, gulls, terns, egrets, storks and many more. The thing that it seems most go to see are the alligators that are plentiful in the warmer weather.

Thanks for stopping by:

Mike

Welcome to my first blog post here at WordPress.

above tower 72-Edit

(Click on image to view it large size)

America’s Bald Eagle taken at James River VA. Nov. 2014

I am hoping to add new adventures to the blog as well as information describing the images.

In the past, I’ve just dumped images on sites and this will be a nice learning tool to encourage myself to take the time to think about what I’m posting,  answer some questions before they are asked and to correspond with followers of the blog.

Thanks for stopping by and if you choose to follow me I will try to correspond.

Sincerely,

Mike Scott