Black-necked Stilts, Gilbert AZ

The first time I saw these elegant waders at Veterans Oasis Park, I was entranced.  Doubly so when I was able to identify them my own self, using a guide book.

In the years since then, I’ve often failed to resist the temptation to take shots of them from too far away, or in bad light.  This year, I set out to do better at Gilbert Water Ranch.  I chose a location where I could reliably find them.  I got up at 6 AM and then chose a spot where they’d be lit up by the rising sun.  

Then I waited for them to come close enough to shore for a photo with reasonable resolution.  And facing the right way.  And without other distracting elements in the frame.

It would be a lot like work, if it weren’t so much fun.

Black-necked stilt in early morning light

Two black-necked stilts reflected in water.



  1. Laurna Tallman

    Your photos affect the way I look at the world. I thought the first of these was comical — the splendid clarity of the bird reflected wiggly by the water — until I saw the two with double the distortions and fun. Thanks for taking the time.

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