Jordan Lake. Sometimes I think it is good for all of us to slow down a wee bit … even a great blue heron! He takes a very slow sip and shakes the excess water off the end of his long beak. Then the heron gives us a lovely launch all in slow motion.

Great Blue Heron in Slow Motion

On March 24, 1947, I came into this world. I once asked my mother what was I like – did I cry or smile – on the day I was born. She laughed and said you came in to the world singing. That revelation is startling: not that I was singing, but, because my mother had lost most of her hearing by the time I was born. I have spent my life in song, however over the last couple of decades, most of the singing has been simply for the ears of the animals that I work with, the birds that I photograph and the trees that I lean against.
I do enjoy singing but it is not the driving force of my life. Although, in a way, I feel I am singing as I satisfy my voracious curiosity and am almost driven to share my discoveries. Perhaps I do sing as I talk about soaring bald eagles, nesting blue birds, pennant dragonflies, American field pansies, ancient red oak trees, companion cats, patient dogs, horses I hug and attempt to heal and oh the smiles and the tears of all my friends.
I was asked a couple of days ago how my GoFundMe campaign was going. The nesting bald eagles have so occupied my time that I had not looked lately. So I pulled up the site and realized the campaign was close to the 3/4 of a century point … a 75, just as I am today. So I thought I would bring each of you up-to-date. There is still a distance to go for there to be enough funding for me to have the new camera and the new lenses. It’s been a year since I had a birthday gift to unwrap. Could you help me further unwrap my gift of singing the song of the birds through my photography and help me to continue to share my birthday gift with the world in brand new photographs? If you’ve already helped, my continuing thank you for your prayers and your funds. Please share this notice. If you’ve not joined in the campaign yet, would you consider doing so and as my mother would say: if it’s your birthday too, happy birthday and if it is not your birthday today then have a very happy un-birthday with me. GoFundMe https://gofund.me/9ba7f009

Doc Ellen 75th Birthday

Jordan Lake: Yesterday we saw a Pine Warbler – as I described it – tumbling after an insect. One of my friends suggested that really the better adjective was to say that the warbler had launched. I certainly think that adjective could also apply to today’s photos. This great blue heron had perched way at the top of the pine tree. Suddenly he was up off the top and headed down. Truly a full wing, full force, headed down launch!

Jordan Lake, Haw River 16 minutes after the sun rose … I was tracking a male osprey as he came in over the dam and almost disappeared down into the shadows of the riprap and the sudden glare of the sun. I watched the osprey flare and snatch his fish and then the quiet morning exploded in osprey shrieks and great blue heron gronks. A large light grey shadow was closing in on the osprey. I don’t know if the heron had had an eye on the same fish as the osprey or that the heron took exception to the osprey disturbing his morning fishing. The osprey fled the river with his fish and out over the dam and the heron grumbled his way back to the riprap shoreline.