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Archive for the ‘Frogs and Toads’ Category

Sunrise on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Sunrise on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

 

At this time of year I usually take a moment to repost some of my favorite images that I captured throughout the past twelve months. I did not do as much traveling about as I had hoped to due to various reasons, but I did mange to find the time to travel to the beautiful Caribbean island of Cayman Brac (a return trip is planned for March 2015) for some memorable imagery and discover the awesome Georgian Bay Rugged Hiking Trail in Parry Sound, Ontario. Here is a selection of my 14 favorite photos from 2014. Hope you enjoy them and please remember to click on each image to view the larger, sharper version.

I would also like to thank each of my subscribers for their continued support here and wish you all a safe and prosperous New Year!

Happy New Year!!!

Barn Owl in Cave on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Barn Owl in Cave on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Octopus on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Octopus on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Snowy Owl in Blizzard Conditions, Thornton, Ontario

Snowy Owl in Blizzard Conditions, Thornton, Ontario

Green Frog Chorusing in Pond at Night, Thornton, Ontario

Green Frog Chorusing in Pond at Night, Thornton, Ontario

Fisheye Lens View of Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario

Fisheye Lens View of Hatchery Falls, Muskoka, Ontario

Soldier Crab on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Soldier Crab on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Skeleton River in Winter, Muskoka, Ontario

Skeleton River in Winter, Muskoka, Ontario

Cuban Tree Frog at Night on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Cuban Tree Frog at Night on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Conch Shell Sunrise on the Caribbean Sea, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Conch Shell Sunrise on the Caribbean Sea, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Sunrise at Pollard Bay, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Sunrise at Pollard Bay, Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands

Skeleton River in Black & White, Muskoka, Ontario

Skeleton River in Black & White, Muskoka, Ontario

Sunset on the Georgian Bay Rugged Hiking Trail, Parry Sound, Ontario

Sunset on the Georgian Bay Rugged Hiking Trail, Parry Sound, Ontario

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Glacial Erratics in Arrowhead Provincial Park, Ontario

Glacial Erratics in Arrowhead Provincial Park, Ontario

As I await the cold and snow so that I can head out for some fresh winter photography, I thought I would post a few additional images that I have worked on over the last few weeks. I have been busy trying to get caught up on a back log of image processing over the last couple of months, and am pleased to say I have almost completed my task.

Please remember to click on the images to see the larger, sharper versions.

Pink Flamingo at Elmvale Jungle Zoo, Ontario.

Pink Flamingo at Elmvale Jungle Zoo, Ontario.

Great White Pelican, Toronto Zoo, Ontario.

Great White Pelican, Toronto Zoo, Ontario.

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Bullfrog on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Mute Swan at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario.

Mute Swan at Humber Bay Park, Toronto, Ontario.

Underwater View of Lily Pads on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Underwater View of Lily Pads on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario.

Muskoka Woodland Details near Parry Sound, Ontario.

Muskoka Woodland Details near Parry Sound, Ontario.

Red-tailed Green Rat Snake, Toronto Zoo, Ontario.

Red-tailed Green Rat Snake, Toronto Zoo, Ontario.

Soldier Crab on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands.

Soldier Crab on Cayman Brac, Cayman Islands.

Aerial View of Owen Island off the Coast of Little Cayman Island in the Cayman Islands.

Aerial View of Owen Island off the coast of Little Cayman Island in the Cayman Islands.

Winter Details on Frozen River - one from the 2013 archives.

Winter Details on Frozen River – one from the 2013 archives.

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Bullfrog at Dusk. Nikon D800 & Nikon 105mm Micro Lens

The winning images were announced a couple of weeks ago for the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition and I thought I would take a moment to share two of my entries that proceeded to the final round of judging. Unfortunately, that is where this story ends but nonetheless I was thrilled that two of my both Bullfrog photos created in my favorite wetland at my family cottage on Horseshoe Lake, near Parry Sound, Ontario had made it to the final round in this prestigious competition.

To view the Grand Prize winning image and to see the category winners for both the adult and young awards click here and follow the links to the corresponding galleries. And do remember to click on each image to see the larger, sharper version.

Bullfrog in Wetland - Nikon D800 & Nikon 18-35mm

Frog-scape – Nikon D800 & Nikon 18-35mm

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American Toad. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 800, f8 @ 1/100 sec

American Toad. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 800, f8 @ 1/100 sec

One of my favorite ways to photograph smaller critters with the Sigma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens is to utilize the sensor crop feature on the Nikon D800. For each of the images in this post I selected the DX 1.5 crop. which is the sensor size of  DSLRs with the APS-C size sensors. When this crop is selected the 15mm fisheye lens becomes the 35mm equivalent of 22mm. Considering that the Sigma fisheye lens already focuses down to 5.5 inches once the sensor crop is selected you have a very effective tool for creating up-close-and-personal portraits of small critters that also give a sense of the habitat in which these critters live. Do note that the Sigma Fisheye lens will focus almost twice as close as the Nikon 16mm Fisheye Lens and for the type of imagery I like to create with the fisheye perspective this is what makes the Sigma lens such an important tool that now follows me everywhere I go :)

Here are a few American Toad images and one Spotted Salamander photo that were created a couple of weeks ago while exploring the woodlands for toads and salamanders. You may note that the salamander only has one eye, which is either a deformity or a past injury now healed. I purposely photographed the good side in hopes of hiding the closed eye. Interestingly enough I photographed this same salamander last fall, so the deformity allows me to monitor this particular one, which resides beneath a log on the cottage property at Horseshoe Lake.

Please do remember to click on each of the photos to view the larger, sharper versions.

American Toad on Haircap Moss. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/250 sec

American Toad on Haircap Moss. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/250 sec

American Toad. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f 2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens. ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/40 sec

American Toad. Nikon D800, Sigma 15mm f 2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens. ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/40 sec

Spotted Salamander. Nikon D800, SIgma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/160 sec

Spotted Salamander. Nikon D800, SIgma 15mm f2.8 EX DG Fisheye Lens, ISO 1250, f11 @ 1/160 sec

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Bullfrog at Dawn on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Bullfrog at Dawn on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

During my last round of trips to photograph the Bullfrogs on Horseshoe Lake in Ontario’s Parry Sound region I was under close watch by one member of the resident beaver family that resides in the marsh. In fact, the Bullfrogs most often hang out in very close proximity to the active beaver lodge. Each evening as I would arrive at the wetland to photograph the frogs the beaver would swim out of the lodge and feast on the stems of the yellow pond lily leaves while seemingly watching my every move. I did think that the beaver was behaving a little differently than usual. Nonetheless I happily photographed the bullfrogs and was even lucky enough to catch an ambient light image of one of the males with it’s vocal sac inflated, and I love the blurred effect of the water beside the vibrating vocal sac.

Bullfrog_350

Bullfrog Chorusing

I was also able to work on some more of my frog-scapes with my Nikon 18-35mm lens, which quickly became my favorite lens for such imagery. The easiest and most effective way to create frog-scapes is to use a wide-angle lens with the Live View feature that is available on DSLRs today. I like to use a bubble level in the camera’s hot-shoe to ensure all is square with the world as well.

Bullfrog at Dusk on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Bullfrog at Dusk on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

On the week I departed from the cottage on Horseshoe Lake my brother Gregg had shown up to spend a week at the lake. A couple of days later he sent me a text message to inform me to be very careful of the beavers in the marsh. The large male beaver (see image below) charged my brother in the canoe as well as a couple of kids that were also nearby. As it turns out the beaver pups were now old enough to leave the den for under the protective eyes of their parents. Beavers can be very dangerous animals and should not be under-estimated. In May 2013, a Russian fisherman was killed when a beaver attacked him and severed a major artery. When I travel north to the cottage again next week I will need to be very careful of the beavers and be mindful of there whereabouts while I am with the Bullfrog.

Beaver in Wetland on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Beaver in Wetland on Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Please remember to click on each of the photos to see the larger, sharper version.

 

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Bullfrog_334

I have just returned from my trip up to Horseshoe Lake in Ontario’s Parry Sound region. I have lots of fresh images to share over the course of the next few weeks before my return trip. I spent a considerable amount of time in a nearby wetland with the local Bullfrog population and do seem to have become good friends with one fellow. This particular male Bullfrog is extremely co-operative and will allow me to pick him up without hesitation. I am guessing that I have likely photographed him several times over the last few years and he is quite used to my presence. I will need to look to through my older images to see if I can find any identifying marks that would be informative in that regard.

Please click on the image to see the larger, sharper version.

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Male Bullfrog Among Water Lily Leaves, Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Male Bullfrog Among Water Lily Leaves, Horseshoe Lake, Parry Sound, Ontario

Alas, the time of year has come where I head north to the family cottage on Horseshoe Lake in Ontario’s Parry Sound region. As a result the blog will be quiet for about one week. I hope to return with a new batch of froggie pics and even a few new images from one of Ontario’s premier photographic locations – Killbear Provincial Park. Below you will see a Black & White conversion of an image created at Killbear Provincial Park during one of my numerous visits last year.

In the bullfrog image above, if you click on it to see the larger, sharper version you will see the clear translucent skin floating beside the frog. Did you know that frog’s shed their skin and eat it too?

See ya all soon :)

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