More Time Well Wasted

The place? A state park.

The location? The causeway separating the coastal estuary, subject to the tides, from a dammed-up pond of water, subject only to human whims.

The time? Noon.

The conditions? Warm. Sunny.

The result? Oodles of smirking alligators basking in the sun along the “shoreline” where the rocks buttressing the causeway meet the scummy water.

This is my best side.
That’s funny. This is *my* best side.

Secure in their apex-predator role, these guys are not worried about being within 20 feet of any puny human. Nevertheless, some still go for stealth, perhaps the better to surprise lunch, my dear.

Nothing to see here but a bit of green weed . . .

But I don’t drive through steady traffic for the gators: I do it for the birds. There are all kinds.

Some birds have no trouble maintaining their stance, even when their top half is moving fast…

Ready, set, GO!

… but some have to work a little harder to get and to maintain their balance, both when landing…


… and even when just walking.

Yikes! It’s squishy soft stuff! Deploy wing flaps!

Most are fairly good at not attracting unwanted attention, as seen in this 30-minute time-lapse photo.

I am the grass-rus.

Some are extremely uncooperative, lunging partly out of the frame and completely out of focus, and in search of what? A measly morsel.

Got ya!

I dunno. It hardly seems worth the trouble.

Some, though, are happy to pose for what seems like seconds, admiring the view.

Mirror, mirror, in the pond…

And some seem to be reflecting on the whims not of humans, but of fate.

Why did I have to get the ecological niche of wading through scummy water?

I know just how they feel. All of them.

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10 Responses to More Time Well Wasted

  1. barbara carslson says:

    Both prehistoric creatures still thriving, some of them thanks to these sanctuaries.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Barbara – 🙂 Yes, I’ve been impressed with the extent of wildlife reserves/preserves/sanctuaries along the southern end of the East Coast.

  2. Judith Umbach says:

    Thanks for a wonderful (dry) trip through the swamp! Bird behaviour is your sweet spot.

  3. Tom Watson says:

    Wow! Great pictures!

  4. All great captures, well captioned!

  5. Ken from Kenora says:

    Excellent photos as usual, and yes I see it, they do smirk. I never figured that out before.

    • Isabel Gibson says:

      Ken – Many thanks. That trick of physiology is sort of unsettling, in context. What, exactly, are they smiling about?

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