Sunday, 2 June 2013

Macro Monday - Who? Who?

Who? Who?

 A long-eared owl, that's who!

And yes, I have had far too much coffee.

 And no, I never blink!

And no, those long ear-like feathers are not my ears, those are just feathers. My ears are on either side of my head. The openings are asymmetrical: the left ear opening is higher than the right. This positioning helps me to locate prey by sound and I can catch mice in total darkness just by sound.

The nasty people who caught me in their nets (which I apparently can't see or hear and which managed to catch me THREE times), seemed to be extremely happy with the whole affair. I was definitely NOT amused!

For more More Macro Monday, go here.

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Macro Monday - Wow!

I know you aren't going to believe these photos. I know you are going to think that I must have supersaturated them using Photoshop. But really, these tiny little rufous hummingbirds really are this brilliant, this shiny, this sparkling, this absolutely fabulous!

Let me introduce to you the diminutive rufous hummingbird (Selasphorus rufus). This bird is not found in some far-flung tropical rainforest, only reachable by canoe and tapir. Nope, this little beauty can be found quite easily by anyone living along the west coast of North America and down into Mexico.

 A few things you really should know about rufous here:
  1. He weighs little more than a penny. She, perhaps a nickel.
  2. They don't just eat nectar - they get their protein by consuming many very small insects.
  3. Compared to their body size, their migration flight is the longest for any bird. Some travel all the way from Alaska down to overwinter in Mexico - approx. 80,000,000 times its own body length. This compares to about 50,000,000 by the arctic tern, which migrate from pole to pole.
  4. They are damn cute!!

These birds are incredibly feisty little firecrackers, ready to take on birds of any size, even buzzing the odd bird bander at times!

For more Macro Monday, go here.

P.S. I was going to title this post "A Real Hummdinger of a Photo!", but then I found out that there are other meanings of the word hummdinger ............. you look it up if you don't know, I am not going there!