As I mentioned last post, it is as dry as a chip here at the moment, so for wildlife, water is pretty scarce! I have friends who are part of a wildlife rescue network here in the Whitsundays. As they have an interest in birds, often when I visit they have birds that they are attempting to nurse back to health before release back to the wild. Mostly they are successful but unfortunately there a times when they are not.
Around their home they have some birdbaths that the local avian population take full advantage of to cool down and have a drink during the early morning and late afternoon. After seeing a great image years ago of a Kestrel coming to roost in a tree taken with the aid of fill flash, I wanted to have a crack at a similar image with off camera flash. Not as easy as it looks , you need to have lightning fast reflexes to catch them as they land or take flight! Still, I managed to to capture a few nice images of two Australian Icon birds as well as a few shots with tail feathers exiting the frame!
The Sulphur Crested Cockatoo is the raucous clown of the bush and was a pleasant surprise. He didn’t appreciate the flash going off and you could see him visibly start every time I tripped the shutter!
Both are wild birds and were not harmed in the making of this blog post!
Canon 5D II, 580 EX II off camera flash, Manual mode, triggered by Yongnuo RF-603 remote triggers
Went for a wander through the rainforest yesterday, also got a reminder about why it is called rainforest….. about as far away from the car as it was possible to be!
Love going on that particular walk because it is never the same, there is always something new to see. It also challenges me photographically. There are some magnificent Strangler Figs that I want to photograph, I walk around them,marvelling at their forms and complex shapes. But I walk on without taking a picture because any photo I take won’t capture their essence. One day, the pieces will fall into place and I will get an image that distills them within a rectangular frame.
One thing that always strikes me about rainforest is that it is a battleground and one of the biggest prizes is sunlight. Every plant needs sunlight for survival and growth.This image is my interpretation of the importance on sunlight to the rainforest, hope you like it!
While I was staying with the Ellis Brothers, I thought I would take the opportunity to visit one of my favourite places. Many people walk past these falls without knowing it as the track is not marked and is fairly overgrown in places.
First time I had been here in about 10 years and I had always wanted to get some newer images of the place.Situated on the Pencil Pine Ck which is the Northern boundary of the National Park, it is a special little spot that has always filled me with a sense of what wilderness is all about!
This image was taken as I was walking out from Liffey Falls featured in the last post. This is a beautiful little spot with pristine examples of Myrtle Beech, Sassafrass & Man Ferns. Luckily this in a reserve but not too far away logging still continues!
This image was shot in the Highland area of Tasmania. Pencil Pines are a species related to Huon & King William (King Billy) Pines and are a remnant of Gondwanwa. Found only in Tasmania and Parts of S.America they are a slow growing tree. This one could be up to 500yrs old.
Endemic to Alpine regions they endure some of the harshest winter conditions you could find in Australia but are susceptible to fire.
I love the twisted textures that these hardy trees exhibit ant that is what caught my eye with this image.
Well,finally the sunshine has returned and looks like it might stay for a while. The ground is soggy and the roads are a mess,hopefully everything will dry out and we can all enjoy some nice weather for a change!
Yesterday I went for a drive out to Lake Proserpine with the idea of getting a couple of shots of the water coming over the spillway. Couldn’t get near it because of fences and gates, so I went for a drive along one of the access roads to cattle properties that border the lake.
I came across this stand of eucalypts and I was taken by the shape of the big white one in the center of the image. Love the way it seems to glow against the surrounding forest.
Thankfully there is still a lot of this type of forest in the area. If we keep destroying forests worldwide, one of the best ways of removing carbon from the atmosphere and producing the oxygen that we all need will be lost!
Wandering through the rainforest is something I like to do occasionally, the peace and quiet always seems to recharge my batteries! When you start looking closely you realise that the peace and quiet masks a struggle for survival that is incessant and sometimes downright nasty.
Sunlight is the name of the game in the rainforest, just about every plant is trying to get as much as it can of a limited resource. Many types of plant like the Strangler Fig will use any means to get to the sun in some cases killing another tree in the process.
Large rocks split apart by the tenacious roots of a tree that is looking for nutrients is a common sight.
Because rain forest is often situated in mountainous areas, larger trees require a root system that will give extra support , so the convoluted buttress root system is favoured by larger trees like Tulip Oak.
Taking a camera into the rainforest is often frustrating as you try to capture the myriad of textures,shapes and colours surrounding you. Light levels are usually low, so a tripod is an absolute. Trying to pluck some order from the chaos surrounding you is sometimes difficult but I usually find if you slow down and start looking for the details you usually find some great images.
Be prepared to spend a lot longer in the forest than you originally planned! Oh, and don’t forget the repellant!