Sunday, November 29, 2015

Dinosaur Descendants

The Donald Trump bird.
See the hairstyle?  And the flamboyance?

On the day after Thanksgiving in past years we have gone ice-skating.  But last year we noticed that the teens seemed more interested in watching the horse-drawn carriages than in skating.

This year, we decided to do something different: The National Aviary (I'll bet you didn't know the National Aviary is in Pittsburgh!).  Lots of other people had the same idea, and we had to park very far away.  This was not a total loss, as the long walk made me feel entitled to another piece of pie when we returned home.

I'm not deeply interested in birds, but I really like going to the Aviary.  It is not huge (compared to, say, the Zoo), and can be fully visited in part of an afternoon.  The Aviary works hard to give a conservationist message to the public, without being obnoxious about it.  Spending time around birds makes me feel glad I have limbs.

I viewed our visit to the Aviary as a photo assignment.  This was challenging to me for various reasons, mostly that I don't know what I am doing as a photographer.  (That video photography tutorial I downloaded remains unwatched, due to excessive actual events taking place.)  Visual obstructions included fences, tree limbs, dirty glass, humans, and other birds.  Most birds do not sit still for a photo portrait.

Without further ado, here are the 35 photos of birds and a few mammals which I feel are passable photos, out of the 200 photos I took.  Don't the birds look really prehistoric?  Please click to enlarge and see the photos up close and personal-like.

Andean Condor

Bald Eagle

Another bald eagle

Scarlet Macaw

Golden-breasted starling

White-crested laughing thrushes

White-crested laughing thrush

Scarlet Macaw, smiling

This looks like some kind of macaw.  But really,
to me it looks Very Like A Dinosaur

Hyacinth Macaw

Victoria Crowned Pigeon.
Imagine combing that hairstyle in the morning.

A shiny blue bird whose name I couldn't find.

Rainbow lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeets grooming.
If the photo had turned out better, it would have been
great for Valentine's Day.

As near as I can tell, this is a Southern Bald Ibis, except its
beak is the wrong shape.

Close up of the potential Southern Bald Ibis.  To me it looks
like a Grandpa Bird.  So that's what I'm going to call it.


Eastern Screech Owl.
I think this was my favorite.  Those tufty things are not ears.

Keel-billed toucan.
Did not ask us for any Fruit Loops.

I could not determine from the Aviary photos what the
name of this bird is.

Two toucans

The bird with the ridiculously long tail is the Paradise Whydah.
We called it "Miss Lolla Lee Lou." It was an obnoxious bird,
flying all around, dive-bombing humans and birds alike.

Well-behaved shaft-tailed finches

Shaft-tailed finches again

The one in the middle is called a Red Bishop.

Roseate spoonbill

Flamingo, feeding

Talk about your gorgeous colorings.

A flying fox, a type of fruit bat

These bats did not even bother to sit upright for their meal.

Penguins waiting for their dinner.


Anonymous said...

These birds are so cayute! Aren't there some ibises in there? Those fruit bats are my favorite. Except for the fuzzy, fat birds, those are even more my favorite. But they're all so CAYUTEEEEEEEEEE!

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

Wow, some really great shots here, Carolyn! I especially love the one of the Victoria Crowned Pigeon. (This from someone who barely remembers to brush her hair once in the morning!)
My DIL is a bird-lover and would have been thrilled to spend the afternoon there.

Cassi said...

Great photos :-) I especially love the fruit bat, and those shaft-tailed finches --they look so soft! I wish all the pigeons in our area hat that fancy headdress.

Angie said...

These are beautiful photos, CHM! I love the Aviary. My favorite bird is the Roseate Spoonbill. They are native in Louisiana. We see them frequently.

Susan Jones said...

I think you are a truly wonderful photographer, Carolyn. I would be too nervous to take any pictures in a public place, and I tend to take pictures of things that stand still - like trees and buildings - so you have totally impressed me! I think I like the rainbow Lorikeet best, because its colors are so clean and pure . . . just the way they should be! Thank you for sharing your happy day! Love, Susan

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Beautiful. We filled our backyard feeders and are enjoying the color of the feathers--birds are fun to watch. You have the National Aviary! I had no idea! Actually, I didn't even know there was one.