Category Archives: Photos-Lord of Leisure

The Wilds Of Shenandoah National Park

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The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

This perspective on the early spring pastel colors of the budding oaks in the wilds of Shenandoah National Park contrasting with darker evergreens can be obtained only during  a brief period in early spring.

The telephoto lens flattens the perspective and simplifies the picture to a study of form, texture and color.

Click on image to enlarge (highly recommended in this case)

  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. All Lord of Leisure photos can be found at Photos – Lord of Leisure. []

Dogwood In Deep Woods Of The New River Gorge

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The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

The focus in this shot  is  a Dogwood tree set in the deep woods of the New River Gorge.

As was the case with Rainy Day Photo Of Glade Creek Grist Mill, the weather was damp and the sky was overcast – perfect conditions for this picture. A sunny day would have put the scene’s elements in almost garish contrast.

The softer effect makes for a more interesting atmosphere in which to isolate the Dogwood with its bright white blossoms against the forest’s blacks and dark greens.

Click on photo to enlarge image

  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. []

Rainy Day Photo Of Glade Creek Grist Mill

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Glade Creek Grist Mill (click to enlarge)

The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

The area in and around West Virginia’s Babcock State Park is a mountainous region (like most of the state) through which a deep canyon, created by the New River, runs for many miles. The area is under federal protection with a “Wild and Scenic River” designation like the Current and Jack’s Fork Rivers in Missouri2 and the Buffalo River in Arkansas.

The Glade Creek Grist Mill lies within Babcock State Park and is the most photographed mill in West Virginia and perhaps anywhere in the country. Most photos of the mill, however, are taken in the fall with spectacular color flooding the area.

I had  hoped that the trees would be more leafed out, but spring had just begun when we arrived. I photographed the mill twice. The first day was partly cloudy, but the second day it was raining lightly in a with low overcast sky. I know the rainy day photo would be the best. It gives the picture a moody atmosphere and the wet leaves and bark bring out the subtle colors of the early spring trees.

More About Glade Creek Grist Mill

According to the Babcock State Park Site,

The Glade Creek Grist Mill is a new mill that was completed in 1976 at Babcock. Fully operable, this mill was built as a re-creation of one which once ground grain on Glade Creek long before Babcock became a state park. Known as Cooper’s Mill, it stood on the present location of the park’s administration building parking lot.

… the mill was created by combining parts and pieces from three mills which once dotted the state. The basic structure of the mill came from the Stoney Creek Grist Mill which dates back to 1890. It was dismantled and moved piece by piece to Babcock from a spot near Campbelltown in Pocahontas County. After an accidental fire destroyed the Spring Run Grist Mill near Petersburg, Grant County, only the overshot water wheel could be salvaged. Other parts for the mill came from the Onego Grist Mill near Seneca Rocks in Pendleton County.

An illustrated explanation of the working mill and its operation can be found at How The Mill Runs.

Finally, close up pictures of the mill which are far less glamorous than today’s photo but do show more detail of the structure itself are accessible at MillPictures.

  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. []
  2. See Greer Springs In The Missouri Ozarks and Alley Spring Mill On The Jacks Fork River []

Young Cooper's Hawk From Lord Of Leisure

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Immature Cooper's Hawk

The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

The subject of these photos is a Cooper’s Hawk that has been hanging around our bird feeder this winter. By all reports, Cooper’s Hawks are  becoming more comfortable in suburban areas where they find easy prey around feeders.

The Cooper’s Hawk in the photo previously published at Heck Of A Guy (see Cooper’s Hawk Completes Raptor Trio)  was a mature bird while today’s photos show a first year bird with the characteristic striped plumage of the breast and the mottled back. It is possible this is the offspring of the previous bird.

It is difficult to distinguish sex by appearance,  but the female tends to be larger than the male.

Their favorite prey in our neighborhood are Mourning Doves , but they may go after any kind of bird smaller than they are.  Notice it is standing on one foot.   I don’t know whether this is common behavior or not.

I shot these pictures through a double paned bedroom window, but they turned out well nonetheless.

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  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. []

Cooper's Hawk Completes Raptor Trio

Cooper's Hawk

Cooper's Hawk

The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

The Cooper’s Hawk is a woodland hawk with impressive acrobatic skills. Unlike the previously featured Red Tailed Hawk and Barred Owl, the Cooper’s Hawk uses its flying talents to maneuver through trees and limbs to prey on other birds.2

All About Birds points out that this is not a strategy that is without risk.

Dashing through vegetation to catch birds is a rather dangerous lifestyle. A recent study found that 23 percent of all Cooper’s Hawks examined had healed fractures in the bones of the chest, especially of the furcula or wishbone.

  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. []
  2. From All About Birds: “A Cooper’s Hawk captures a bird with its feet, and will squeeze it repeatedly to kill it. It does not bite the prey to kill it in the fashion of falcons, but holds it away from its body until it dies. It has been known to drown its prey, holding a bird under water until it stops moving.” []

Barred Owl Joins Photo Menagerie

Barred Owl

Barred Owl

The Lord of Leisure1 Photo Gallery

Lord of Leisure writes:

Like the Red Tailed Hawk featured last week, the Barred Owl is a raptor. This particular specimen lurks in our back yard, keeping an eye out for the small varmints that routinely filch food from the feeders. Barred Owls dive on their prey from a perch.2

The “barring” on the chest is the origin of the Barred Owl’s name. This owl is also known as the “eight hooter” for its call which sounds like, “Who cooks for you, who cooks for you-all.” After a few beers I can do a pretty good imitation of the barred owl call.

  1. Lord of Leisure was previously known in these posts as Mr. Science. Both Lord of Leisure and Mr Science spend most of their time disguised as Neil Ellis, mild-mannered, retired teacher at a great suburban school system, who can identify a bird by its call, complete the New York Times Friday Crossword in ink, and snap a heck of a photo. []
  2. According to The Owl Pages, the owls prefer “meadow voles, followed by shrews and deer mice, the owls also feast on mammals such as rats, squirrels, rabbits, bats, moles, opossums, mink, and weasels. Birds are taken occasionally, including woodpeckers, grouse, quail, jays, blackbirds, and pigeons. They also eat small fish, turtles, frogs, snakes, lizards, crayfish, scorpions, beetles, crickets, and grasshoppers. Birds are taken as they settle into nocturnal roosts, because they cannot catch birds on the wing. They will also swoop down to the water’s edge to catch frogs, other amphibians, and occasionally fish. Barred Owls are attracted to campfires and lights where they forage for large insects. Prey is usually devoured on the spot. Larger prey is carried to a feeding perch and torn apart before eating.” []