The Irrefutable Persistance of Beauty~

Beauty is, indeed, all around us and inside of us. Sometimes it is hard to recognize and easy to forget…thank you for the gentle reminder, Cindy!

is all around us,

and inside us,


unique and perfectly imperfect.


Sometimes, when we are worried or troubled,

we fail to recognize,

beauty.


But is always here,

just waiting for us to notice,

and bring us comfort.

Cheers to you from all that is beautiful in you and around you~

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Egyptian Quackers in Germany~

How about some beautiful Egyptian geese for the first full day of summer? I don’t refer to geese as quackers – that name goes to ducks – I call them “honkers!”

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Is there anything more winsome than newly hatched Egyptian goslings?

Mama is quite a beauty too!

Germany has a wonderful selection of exotic birds swimming in their lakes and rivers.

Egyptian Geese originated in the Nile Valley and Africa, and were considered sacred by the Ancient Egyptians who first domesticated them.

People bought these geese as ornamental birds and many escaped, establishing feral colonies all over Western Europe.

I saw these beauties swimming in The Neckar River in Heidelberg during my April trip.

Cheers to you from The Holler, and from the hopefully, still-happily paddling geese in Germany~

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Hummer’s Mean Home: Part I (Perching)~

I love watching the hummers around my house – one of these days, I’ll get a camera that will be able to take close-ups of them that are as crystal-clear as Cindy’s are, here!
😎


Coming home means hanging out with the hummers.

I don’t worry about them when I’m gone.

I just miss them.

My husband, the actual-factual, logical-biostatistician, said incredulously, “They fly up to me like they missed me.”

He’s not used to thinking like this,


but he can’t help noticing such obvious birdy behavior.

Speaking of birdy behavior, we are having a problem this year.

The snoozing little capitalist you see above is dominating two quart-sized feeders and relentlessly attacking and driving all hummers off who try to feed. He spends more time hoarding nectar than feeding and snoozes all the time because he’s exhausted from all his effort. Of course he can’t even begin to drink this much nectar!

You can see him perched on the wire above the feeder, waiting to attack any bird that dares to drink! We have three feeders now spaced far apart to control him, one…

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Drifting on Still Water~

Lovely swans, beautifully captured! The black swan is exceptionally striking, with that reddish beak. Black and red – my favourite colour combination!
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“But now they drift on the still water,
Mysterious, beautiful,” WB Yeats

Swans swim,

in synchronized,


silhouettes.


Mama delicately rolls her precious eggs,


to keep them evenly warm,

and plucks her feathers to tuck them in.

Black swan,

slides in singular grace,


while Narcissus is bewitched by his own reflection.
Cheers to you from European swans in springtime~

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Saker Falcon~

Falcons and other raptors are fascinating birds. Predatory and beautiful!
😎


Saker Falcons live in Austria, Eastern Europe and Asia, including Russia.

They are considered an endangered bird due to rapid population declines in their Asian breeding grounds.

They are a large falcon species,
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that prey mostly on rodents and other birds.

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Sakers often hunt horizontally like Kestrels, not vertically like Peregrines.
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I watched a Saker swoop down on an unsuspecting pigeon, but my presence, in response to the pigeon cries, called off the hunt!
Cheers to you from the remarkable and endangered Saker Falcons~
(Note: These photos were taken in raptor reserves in Europe)

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Curious Kestrels~

Kestrels are beautiful birds – the smallest members of the hawk / falcon family!
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Are rare for me to find.


This pair was mating on the rooftops in Alsace France.


Kestrels are a type of falcon that live all over the world.


These were photographed in Canada and France.

Kestrels will hunt and nest in populated areas if prey is available.


They don’t bother building their own nests, preferring to steal other bird nests!


They often hover in mid-air over prey, before dropping to consume them.

Cheers to you from the quite handsome French & Canadian Kestrels~

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Blumen Baden~

Cindy went tip-toeing through the tulips and shared these lovely photos. Beautiful!
😀


Baden-Baden’s spring bloom is just beginning.

The tulips on the Lichtenthaler Alle,

a strolling avenue and park,

that follows the River Oos,

are beginning their splendid spring bloom.


The park,

created in the 19th century,

is a wonderland of exotic plants and flowers.

Cheers to you from Baden-Baden’s glorious alle~

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Mandarians in Baden-Baden~

Beautiful Mandarin ducks – lovely to see!
😎


These guys weren’t part of my plan for the day!


I was going to show you Baden-Baden,

but the Mandarins got in my way!

Why are Mandarin Ducks swimming wild in Germany you may well wonder?


Although Mandarin Duck populations are dwindling in their native Russia and Asia, some escapees from captivity are breeding in the wild in Germany and The UK. I happened upon these guys today on the Oos River in Baden-Baden Germany.


So, it is cheers to you, and Happy Spring, from the gorgeous Mandarins in Baden-Baden Germany~

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FEEDING DONE………NAP TIME

You know that spring has sprung when Nature’s little ones make their appearance. These are some lovely, tranquil photos of a mother bear with her cub.

Welcome to Tofino Photography

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HOW TO GET A HUMMER TO LAND ON YOUR FINGER

I don’t use a feeder as large as this, but I have had the pleasure of hummers landing on the feeder while I was hanging it, and have held one in my hand twice. Such charming, lovely little critters!
😀

Welcome to Tofino Photography

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I’ve noticed that the Hummers go into a feeding frenzy near sunset.I suspect they do it at sunrise too but I’m too lazy to find that out?

I wondered If I could get one them to land on my finger? Hummers have to be one of the most skittish creatures out there! The slightest movement can make them take off in a blur!

So I tried to think of a way I could get one these beautiful creatures to land on my finger?Holding ones arm out is difficult after a few minutes.So you need a brace for your arm.I used a monopod but you can use a tripod or a pole.

I’ve noticed over the last few nights that they go into a feeding frenzy around 7:45pm.So I set up some lights for filming earlier & waited.

Once I saw them starting to “flock”I turned on the camera & placed…

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