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Featured Mountain to Swamp (Image Heavy, mostly PL 100-400)

Discussion in 'Nature' started by Mountain, Feb 25, 2018.

  1. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    I managed to cap off a week of business travel with an afternoon in one of my all time favorite parks. Brazos Bend State Park is only about ~30min drive south from the bustling city of Houston, but it couldn't feel any more different. I might even argue that it is the best park for wildlife in the USA (at least that I've visited). The trails are well maintained and accessible for nearly anyone, and none are terribly long. I worked in Houston for a few years, and would use Brazos Bend as my way of putting some miles on my boots while I dreamed about far away places at higher elevations. This park, and the hill country around Austin helped maintain my sanity while I was far from the topography that I call home.
    On this trip, I carried a bag of a handful of lenses and tripods and flashes, but in the end decided to spend the afternoon with the PL 100-400 on my GX-8 and the Oly 60 macro on the GX-1. I never bothered to pull out the tripod or wider angle stuff. I stuck to a couple of the main trails (where the highest number of 'gators can be found) and did a couple of loops around 40 Acre Lake, Elm Lake, and the spillway that connects them. I'm happy to provide any additional info on the images, but I'll let the photos do the talking for now. Here's my walk in what is roughly chronological order (I think). I hope that you enjoy it.

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  2. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
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  3. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
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  4. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Houston
    Some nice images, looks like the gators were out for you. I haven't been out for a few weeks due to the flue, but it's good to see the Great Egrets have their breeding colors (last time I was out they had their plumage coming in but not the color). Not sure when I will be get back out but hoping for a trip this week to someplace.
     
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  5. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    Thanks, man. I did see a handful of Bitterns along the spillway, as you predicted, but not too many. I couldn't get good background separation with their location, so I only took a couple of shots. There were a lot of Ibis's molting from the dark feathers into the adult white feathers.
     
  6. Hypilein

    Hypilein Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 18, 2015
    Some very nice images. Well done!
     
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  7. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
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  8. Schwert

    Schwert Mu-43 Regular

    157
    Mar 2, 2016
    Pacific NW
    Wow, what a wide diversity of subjects in that park. Nice work.
     
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  9. retiredfromlife

    retiredfromlife Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    Very nice photos, and the variety of wildlife on offer. wish we had something similar.
     
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  10. Very nice, it looks like a great photo opportunity.
     
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  11. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    It's an incredible place, and one of the highlights from my time out there. I've yet to find a good replacement. I can't recommend it enough.
     
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  12. Wonderful photos!
     
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  13. Xx123456xX

    Xx123456xX Mu-43 Regular

    115
    Nov 11, 2017
    Houston, TX, USA
    Jake
    Great photos. My favorite one is the turtle and gator basking together.

    I'd think pretty much any wetland in the Southern US is good for wildlife viewing.
     
    • Appreciate Appreciate x 1
  14. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Houston
    Last year the Bitterns were everywhere. I would see 30+ every trip. This year I have seen 1, but I know others have seen a few...........I should say that last year was the exception.

    There are always 100’s of Ibis there, they nest in a section of the park that you can’t get to.

    Was suppose to take my kayak out today but plans changed late last night. Going to head over to BBSP early this afternoon in hopes of the gators being out getting sun.
     
  15. ouldsmobile

    ouldsmobile Mu-43 Regular

    96
    Mar 23, 2016
    Toronto, Ontario
    Kevin
    Fantastic photos! Thanks for sharing.
     
    • Appreciate Appreciate x 1
  16. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    Best of luck! I got really lucky with the weather, a day of sunshine after a week of cold rain. The nutria was a first for me, I've not seen them before, even though I've heard that they're abundant.
     
  17. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Houston
    All morning the sun was shinning. Get to BBSP at noon and the clouds rolled in and no more sun. Lots of gators out but none on the paths or good shooting places. But I did watch an American Bittern hunt for 2 1/2 hours and got some great photographs of him. He got close enough that I had to get the other EM1 with the 150/2 out of the backpack.
     
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  18. DynaSport

    DynaSport Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 5, 2013
    Dan
    Beautiful photos!
     
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  19. Usemygoodeye

    Usemygoodeye Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    131
    Apr 7, 2018
    West FL, US
    Wonderful photos. They remind me of some of the spots I go to here in central FL.
     
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  20. Mountain

    Mountain Mu-43 Top Veteran

    982
    Aug 2, 2013
    Colorado
    Thanks! I have a long term goal of visiting all of the national parks, and I'm looking forward to poking around the Everglades with a camera when I make my way to the more eastern parks (although, I suppose that's not very central).
     
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