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Friday, February 27, 2009

Ruddy Turnstone

One of my photography mentors, Clair Postmus, used to always say, "take photographs that tell a story." Too often in photography, we're looking for the perfectly composed shot, the perfect light, and not thinking about recording a bird's behavior or a sequence of photos that gives us a glimpse into that bird's life.

Here's a Ruddy Turnstone I photographed on the GA coast. Ruddy Turnstones are common shorebirds that winter along coastal regions, then migrate to their high-artic breeding grounds. this one is in winter plummage. In breeding plumage they are a beautiful rusty color above.

Not fussy about their food preferences, they poke with their short, thick biill, at anything they consider edible, such as fish, carrions, garbage. They often turn over rocks, pebbles (hence the name "turnstone") seaweed, etc. in search of food. This bird was tasting the washed ashore die-off of these jellyfish. Not sure what caused the die-off, but the beach was full of jellyfish. Made us wonder about the not-good situation for the jellyfish, but a bonanza for the turnstone.

P.S. I changed the background color of the blog to yellow. I told you I like playing around with color.


Connie said...

It is fun to 'see' the story!

Anonymous said...

Your photos of the Ruddy Turnstone definitely tell the story. Very nice photos!

Westmoreland Sanctuary said...

I took pictures of a ring-billed gull eating the same type of jellyfish in April 2008 in Hilton Head, SC! Any idea what species of jelly it might be?

Lillian and Don Stokes said...

We think, but are not sure, they might be Cannonball Jellyfish, since millions congregate in the waters off Georgia in the spring and fall. See;

Peg Wiggins said...

Your yellow is much easier on these old eyes.