It was a hot day in Portland, Oregon today, especially at the zoo. I was watching the elephants in their main courtyard when I noticed this adult, Samudra, deliberately getting in the way of the water hydrant filling their main pool. She was basking in the cool water by sitting in it, putting her face directly in the stream and finally rolling onto her side with the powerful stream spraying her back. She was giving herself a shower massage.
Here we are at week 25 of my Framable Keepers Challenge. We’re in full Summer mode now so there are thousands of opportunities to get out and use your cameras. There are also thousands of excuses you can dream up of why you haven’t done so. It’s up to you which way you go.
This week I simply walked out in my back yard to capture a scene I’ve overlooked so many times. The grounds in my apartment complex, Rock Creek 185, are a veritable garden/park setting. There are ponds, fountains, bridges and benches everywhere. There are birds, squirrels, ducks and geese everywhere as well. I thought I’d share just one smidgeon of the beauty I live with for the past 4 years.
I love it when truly wild and free members of the bird family pay us a visit at the Portland Zoo. I know just a few bird species names when I see them but that doesn’t stop me from photographing them if I get the opportunity. This little guy stood still long enough to snap a photo at quite a distance. The photo isn’t as sharp as my normal shots because of the heavy cropping necessary to bring it to you. Still, he is a handsome specimen.
My final stop of every zoo visit is to Lorikeet Landing. The birds there are so interesting and comical I can’t help saving the best part of my visit for last. As with the other animals at the Portland, Oregon Zoo I’ve become familiar with the names and personalities of the individual birds. I just learned that what appears to be two birds kissing is actually a social habit of parrots regurgitating food to share with other parrots. The photo below was titles “The Three Stooges” because of the 3 parrots involved. DJ, the Lori in the middle, is the zoo’s latest addition to the flock. He’s a different species of parrot than the rest that are Lorikeets.
One habit I formed years ago is to scan the walkway around me for little gems of nature. Some of my favorite photographs have happened using this observation of my environment. Tiny mushrooms growing in the cracks between a sidewalk come to mind. There’s so much beauty all around us if we would just look. I found these tiny flowers growing along the paths I walk at the Portland Zoo, They seem so detailed and delicate I can’t help photographing them to share with others as I store memories for myself. Every photo I’ve taken in my 42 year career has a story behind it.
I’ve been at the right place at the right time often in my photographic career but never have I seen anything like this situation. This action was repeated at least twice while I scrambled to raise my camera and capture it. I’ve never seen two birds seemingly kiss before. It lasted a few seconds so I manage 3-4 frames of the same. I think there was a bit of tongue happening there as well. LOL