09.08.2013 Finally

Yes, finally….I got a shot of a painted turtle at Poor Farm Swamp.  And, also finally, I got a good shot of a Butter and Eggs wildflower…a Toadflax.  I didn’t get out yesterday and almost didn’t today either as the weather was gloomy most of the morning.  But, as Andrew mentioned, PWS set in and I went out anyway.

There is a nice wetland bordering Hop Brook about a half mile or so from where I start along the railtrail.  Unfortunately, there is also a 6 foot tall fence on both sides of the bridge above the brook as it winds through the marsh.  Fortunately, my tripod rises about 7 feet.  I left two feet at their shortest to rest on the railing and one at 7 feet resting on the deck and climbed the lower part of the fence so I could see what I was doing.Hop-Brook-from-Rail-Trail-Bridge-090813-800WebI think this qualifies for O’Diva’s challenge to post a bad image.  It is too tight on the right…although allowing the elimination of a partial branch sticking into the image…and has a dead branch on the large tree left of center crossing several background trees…a compositional no-no.  The light is flat too.  But I like this…maybe because of what I had to do to get the image.

After I turned back, I made a side hike up Hop Brook Trail and found one of my favorite roadside flowers…but not on a roadside.  The Butter and Eggs.  I opted for a single bloom that I was able to isolate by lying on the deck of another bridge which I am sure had a lot of remnant goose poop disintegrated into the wood.  Often in the past I have seen the little comma shaped droppings.  Anyway, more pleasing is the flower.Butter-and-Eggs-090813-800WebHaving finished here I decided to head home for some driveway crack sealing and other chores.  But on the way back I finally had a shot at a painted turtle.  This is a very large crop so it most likely will always live on the web, but as the summer wanes it will be one of the last, if not the last, opportunities.Painted-Turtle-090813-900WebI like the head turn which just preceded the usual “Hey, there’s Steve, I think I’ll drop into the water” act.  I can’t believe how wary they are.  A few years back it was not a problem getting within decent shooting distance with my 300.  Now, not so much.

I hope you enjoyed the Sunday railtrail walk.  Have a great week everybody. 🙂

About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Animal Behavior, Environment., Fauna, Flora, Landscape, Nature Photography, Western Massachusetts and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to 09.08.2013 Finally

  1. Lyle Krahn says:

    Loved that turned up turtle head. Looks like quite a stretch.


  2. Office Diva says:

    Come on, you are gonna have to do much better (worse?) than that top shot to even qualify for the Stinker Photo Contest. Slightly less-than-stellar composition, that’s all you got? Gimme something blurry; insanely boring, or in desperate need of the cosmetologist works in Photoshop. Ya can’t; it’s just not in ya. :-)~~~
    I see how you kindly tried to throw us photo hacks (ok, maybe just me) a bone and make us feel like your insanely talented heron poo photos stink, but I know better! (There is a compliment in there somewhere, I am sure of it). You know what I mean!
    Now that I’ve squashed your hopes of contention (Stelllaaaaa!!!), the Buttered Turtle and Painted Egg shots are great. Wait a minute, I meant the flower and the turtle shots, they are gorgeous.

    I think that turtle was indeed glad to see you instead of someone in a tall white hat plotting tomorrow’s soup menu, mockingly.
    I do so enjoy your photos, and your above and beyond (7′ tripod, really?) approach to photography. It is something to aspire to, she said as she kicked her 56″ tripod under the sofa.
    A good Sunday eve to you.


    • Thanks, O’Diva. I am quite pleased that you enjoy my images as you do…chest puffs out and a confident smile spreads across my face.
      When I bought a new tripod I went for the tallest available as I sometimes find myself on land and the tripod in the water, down a slope or in an awkward situation such as this. It is sometimes hard to see the LiveView screen, especially on a sunny day, but enables me to get shots I otherwise couldn’t. It really aids in the perspective or gets me above an offending bush or branch. Nothing wrong with 56″. That’s eye view height and works great in most situations.


      • Office Diva says:

        Ah, I am learning so much. No wonder you are able to wrest such magic from your camera, and your lofty tripod will surely help you climb into the stratosphere and scoop up some magic beans! ]Sorry, just finished watching Season Two of “Once Upon a Time (Netflix)]. More escapist fantasy entertainment of the storybook kind.

        I really do think you are very talented. You should think about publishing your work as a local artist.


      • Thanks so much, my dear Diva. I actually did have a local printing company do a calendar of my images. I received no money but 250 copies to give away…Andrew and Sandra received one each. But that was back before I had so many bloggy friends to share them with or one would have graced your hallowed halls. But I should make more of an effort to get some sort of return on my investment of time, effort and self. I just put in an application for a gallery hanging at our local hospital and did have one last October in the town library. So I have made some effort, but not enough. Onward and upward. And I am slowly building a permanent show in the Hardacre art holdings in HK. My worldly benefactor. 🙂


      • Office Diva says:

        Good, you should be rewarded, in fame if not in doubloons. ;0)


  3. Great gobs of turtle soup and butter and eggs as the side. I should stop for there is no way to keep up with O’Div. Anyhow, the photo is impressive of the reflections in the water. Your step up- get- up sounds dangerous and I hope you did not put yourself in jeporday/peril. I have just one complaint. Why are the photos so small?

    Mr Turtle is down right handsome. Nice shot of him on the log. And we have a butter and eggs wildflower in Texas which blooms in the spring. Don’t know the genus. I should look that up. 🙂


    • Thanks, Yvonne. No, no real peril. I could have fallen backwards to the floor, I guess, but that could happen if I was standing flat on my feet these days. 🙂
      I sometimes think posting them full sized makes them too overwhelming for the text. If you click the image you get to see the full web-sized image.


  4. Sandra says:

    Butter and Eggs… =D Strange name but fantastic flower and great composition.
    Have a nice week!


  5. Very nice of the turtle and flower, Steve.


  6. Andrew says:

    I wish I could take photos as bad as yours, Steve 😦

    The butter and eggs is a stunner but it needs a bit of ham to make the perfect breakfast.


  7. Just Rod says:

    It was good to hear your own criticism of the first shot – a good lessons for those of us in the early learning stage. How do you keep a seven foot tripod stable? Wow that’s tall.
    I love the painted turtle. We get glimpses of them at certain times of the year. I had one day of success, then they were elusive and evasive – they should be on the news.
    Hope the driveway wasn’t too cracked up by all the jokes in the comments section.


    • Thanks, Rod. A 7 foot tripod balance just as well as a shorter, although I guess it would be more vulnerable in a strong wind.
      It seemed there were more cracks in the driveway than I recalled…maybe it is all the funny stuff in the comments. 🙂
      And, just for you Rod, here is another turtle, possibly painted, and in keeping with my posting videos for your amusement. Maybe a Sunday homily even.


  8. Phil Lanoue says:

    Gotta love Mr. Turtle! Looks like a great area to explore.


  9. I know the “Hey, there’s Steve, I think I’ll drop into the water” act, and I don’t even have to change the name. In contrast, there are some turtles in a small pond at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center here in Austin that seem to have gotten used to people, because they stay put even when visitors are only a yard or two away. If you want some great turtle closeups, that’s one place to get them, and perhaps there’s a similar venue near you.


  10. oh gosh, that turtle is soooo handsome – wish you could show more photos of him. And regarding your top (banner?) photo – the sunlight on the trees bringing out those gorgous autumn colours – simply breathtaking. And btw, I am a ‘new fan’, i.e. I follow you now, dont want to miss any of those beautiful photos. Carina 🙂


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