19 January 2012

Pastoral Breakfast (19/366)

Sandhill cranes, San Acacia, NM, Jan. 2012
Thanks to this 366 photo project I've been making an effort to incorporate photo shoots into my Albuquerque commute, and in most cases leaving home a half-hour earlier gives me plenty of time as long as I've planned where and what to shoot. Today my first two appointments cancelled, so I had plenty of time to stop in San Acacia (yes, the link goes to a commercial site; this is a great outfit!), an agricultural town 15 or so miles north of Socorro. San Acacia is at the southern edge of the Sevilleta NWR, and sandhill cranes seem to like grazing the dormant alfalfa and corn fields during the day. These birds migrate into the area in late autumn and leave in March, and although the most popular place to see them is the Bosque del Apache NWR you can find them in several other places along the middle Rio Grande.

I noticed them a few weeks ago during my morning commute and decided to make this a photo shoot, hoping the birds would cooperate and stay around the near side of this field so I could get some nice closeups. No, they replied indignantly (I would imagine), and before I could get set up they were off to the other side. I'll try again another time, with the camera pre-mounted on the tripod and ready to go, but in the meantime I got some okay shots, and I really enjoyed the spent standing at the edge of this pasture watching and listening to them.

Edit (1/29/12): Here's another, experimental version of the photo, rendered in the Opalotype filter of Topaz Labs' B&W Effects:


Nadege, said...

Cool shot.

Skye said...

That is a beautiful shot. The tree is just so eye catching... a perfect backdrop for the birds :)