Since my retirement, my passions are nature photography (especially bird photography), landscape photography, and travel photography.
I have traveled and photographed sites along the Lewis and Clark Trail, the Oregon Trail, the Mormon Trail, the Santa Fe Trail, and the Bozeman Trail. I have photographed Abraham Lincoln sites throughout Kentucky, Indiana, and Illinois. Most recently I have begun visiting and photographing Civil War battlefields and museums throughout the country
My bird and wildlife photography has taken me to sites throughout the state of Illinois and also to sites throughout the state of Florida.
I have participated in 50 Elderhostel / Road Scholar programs throughout the country and many of my photo galleries shows memories of those wonderful experiences.
I am a lucky man to have had a job that I loved teaching biology in high school for 33 years and now I love my travel and photography "retirement". Please enjoy my photo galleries.
Great Blue Herons are among the widely distributed species of the wading birds. They are large birds with wonderful color and interesting behaviors. In central Illinois, they are typically very skittish and will fly off even as your auto slows. In many areas of Florida they seem much more adapted to people and remain in place and are easier to photograph.
These birds are widely distributed throughout the U.S and relatively easy to find to photograph. Catching them exhibiting behavior requires a lot of patience, but the rewards doing so are great. Be like the successful doctor.....have lots of patients (patience)!!
White ibises are more common than their cousins, the Glossy Ibis. Both feed by jabbing their down-turned beaks into the water or the ground opening to feel a crustacean, a worm, or other foods. Adult White Ibises are pure white while immature forms are mottled brown and white which gradually change to all white are adulthood. Often seen feeding in groups of other ibises or with egrets and herons.
Usually solitary in their feeding behaviors and greatly restricted to shallow marine ponds along the coastline, they are not encountered as often as some wading birds. When feeding, they exhibit more different types of feeding behavior than any other wading bird.
Browse All Photos slide show
These birds are among the most colorful that I photograph. They are beautiful and ugly at the same time. Their ugly green bald heads with bright red eyes appear at one end of the scale. Their breeking plumage of bright pink with diagonal bright red stripe on the side makes them beautiful I would have to rate them as my favorite bird to photograph.
Snowy egrets are often found in Florida. The images in the Photo Gallery were taken at Viera Wetlands (those with a prefix VW in their number) or at the Saint Augustine Alligator Farm (those with a prefix SAAF in their number).
At the Space Coast Birding Festival in 2009, I participated in an "in-the-field" workshop and we encountered at number of Snowy Egrets feeding along the edge of one of the settling ponds. Sitting on an embankment by the pond with my tripod, I spent about an hour photographing "Snowies" and their gliding feeding behaviors as they skimmed the water for small fish.
The best place I have discovered to photograph breeding and nesting behavior in snowy egrets (and about six other species) is the Rookery Walk section of the St. Augustine Alligator Farm in St. Augustine, Florida. From March through May, many species make their nests there.
© Donald E. Chamberlain