Sunday, February 26, 2012

Kauai 2012: Cardinal shots

Sorry—I know it's been a while. After I returned home from Kauai, I was hit with the double whammy of jet lag and illness. Once I finally felt like myself again, I found myself a bit daunted by the number of photos I took, so naturally I dealt with it by procrastinating like my life depended on it.

At any rate, the posting of the rest of the Kauai pics might be a little haphazard; I'll still go through all of the photos for each day and figure out which I like, but I won't knock myself out trying to get all of my faves from a given day into one post.

Today's picks are some closeups I took of a male Northern Cardinal fairly early on in our stay. In general, the birds on Kauai are a lot less skittish around people than the birds around here (possibly because they have no natural predators, save the occasional house cat), and the Cardinals were no exception. I happened to take these particular shots from inside the house, but during our stay they would often come fairly close to us when we were sitting outside on the porch as well.

This first shot is from early in the day, when the light still had a slight golden tone to it:

Such a lucky catch with this shot—because the light was coming from behind the bird, you can see the spray of dust that occurred when he crunched the seed in his beak:

And couple of shots from later in the day; I really liked how the greenery in the background contrasts with the Cardinal's coloring:

This last shot is obviously not of a Cardinal, but as I don't plan on posting any other pics from this particular set I figured I'd include it in this post. As you can see, this dog had absolutely no problem getting comfortable as he waited for his human in the back of this pickup:

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Kauai 2012: Feeding time at Bubba's

As was the case on one of our visits last year, today's lunch at Bubba's Restaurant involved feeding more than just ourselves. However, this time around just one bird dared come close enough to take a fry out of one of our hands: one of the ubiquitous Red Junglefowl that wander all over Kauai like crows do back in Vermont.

We've had a bit of a love/hate relationship with the bird this year, since, as I mentioned in my Grove Farm flowers post, during our first week or so the birds that roosted nearby decided that the hour between 3 and 4 a.m. was a fine time for their first vocalizations of the morning—and did so pretty much on a daily basis. After discussing possible solutions ranging from use of a shotgun filled with bird shot (much to my brother's dismay, the waiting period made this particular option a last resort) to lobbing water balloons at them. But since we kept forgetting to purchase balloons when we were in town, Greg finally got fed up enough that one night he just went outside and threw coconuts at them (important note: no chickens were harmed during the duration of our vacation). The next night, he used a broom to beat the bushes and make sure none were settling in to sleep too close by. 

The rooster we saw today at Bubba's, though, had apparently not yet gotten wind of Greg's fearsome reputation, as after some hesitation it first came close enough to take a few fries from my hand, and then from his. He photographed the rooster eating from my hand for his collection of vacation pics, and I, as you can see, then got some shots of it grabbing a fry from Greg's:

Getting closer...

Almost there...


And while this Zebra Dove wasn't interesting in taking food from us directly, it had absolutely no qualms about hopping up on the table to snag crumbs right off of our plates while the four of us were all still sitting right there. Good thing we were finished eating, huh?