Month: April 2013

Travel Photo Thursday: Capturing “Big Bird”

Travel Photo Thursday: Capturing “Big Bird”

Bald Eagle EmblemIn 1782, the bald eagle was chosen as the the national emblem of the United States. Tens of thousands lived in the country then, but within a hundred years they had become scarce.

The widespread use of the pesticide DDT almost wiped them out; a mere 417 nesting pairs were found in 1963.

I’ve seen numerous eagles wintering near the bird refuges in the Klamath Basin along the Oregon-California border. You can find them as far south as Southern California. And a couple of years ago, while hiking near my home just north of San Francisco, I looked up just as a bald eagle scooped a fish out of mid-air after forcing a smaller osprey to drop the meal it had clutched in its talons.

But the best place I’ve been to for viewing bald eagles is southeast Alaska, where they seem as common as crows or starlings in the Lower 48 states.

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Death and Life: “The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom”

Death and Life: “The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom”

Just over a year ago, the strongest earthquake in its history struck Japan, creating a tsunami that crippled nuclear reactors, washed away towns, and killed and displaced thousands of people.

(“The Tsunamni and the Cherry Blossom” photo)

But hope often springs from natural disasters. The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossomdirected by Lucy Walker won the Jury Prize for Short Film Non-Fiction at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, and was nominated for the 2012 Academy Award for Best Short Subject Documentary. Its images of the devastation are terrifying, while those of cherry blossoms in bloom are calming.

httpvh://youtu.be/ApPsxYpuhG4

As spring nears, cherry trees in both Japan and the United States turn the world pink. For more on the history of the tree and its beauty, we turn to this report by our Repost.US syndication partner, the PBS NewsHour:

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Travel Photo Thursday: Something’s Fishy

Travel Photo Thursday: Something’s Fishy

VM Ugly Fish IMG_2961Photographing fish out of water, like this “Face-That-Only-A-Mother-Could-Love” dead one I spotted in Munich’s Viktualien Markt, is easy, even if you have to shoot through a shop window.

But suppose the fish is very much alive, in the water while you are not, and there’s very little light shining on it?

That’s what you’ll face when visiting an aquarium. Here are examples of fish photos that won’t be “The-One-That-Got-Away-From-You.”

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