Honestly, I’m not much of a birder, that is a photographer who loves to photograph birds. But I do like to get out during the season and do my best to capture some of our feathered friends. A great birding day, for me, is when I can photograph our amazing bald eagle. I recently went on an all day outing with Laura, who is an amazing nature photographer, to four wildlife areas within 2 hours from home.

First stop was the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge in Willows. Wow, just one drive around and we saw eagles, hawks, and sandhill cranes. Here are some of my images:

From there we went to Llano Seco Wildlife Area near Chico. We had never been there and were surprised to see just one viewing platform. I took the opportunity to do some landscape photography:

From here things get blurry in my brain. I should post these blogs when I’m fresh from the activity! We were out on January 11! I think these birds are from Colusa National Wildlife Refuge. It’s much smaller than Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge, but there were photographic opportunities:

Our final stop was Gray Lodge Wildlife Area in Gridley. The sun was beginning to set and we caught a golden glow on the birds and landscapes. The mountains in some of the landscapes are the Sutter Buttes. For sunset, we went to our favorite spot in the area to photograph a spectacular sunset:

So this was the beautiful end to our fantastic day! Could it get any better?

6 thoughts on “Four in a row: Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge and 3 more!

  1. Loved these shots of the birds….we walk the marsh areas near our home most mornings and delight in the birds
    And that sunset…Wow!!
    Best,
    Lynn

  2. Thanks -N! I shoot with a Nikon D7100. The lens was an old/used F4 300 prime. On my crop sensor it shoots about 450mm. I’d love to get something longer, but I just can’t hold it. It was an overcast day and not too much contrast between the sky and the birds. While the lens did its job, the camera produced a lot of noise at the higher ISOs. I’m glad the sun came out at times. The landscapes were shot with my D3100 and at 18mm.

  3. Beautiful photos, Anne!!! You did a great job!! Photographing birds is one of the most difficult things I’ve ever tried with the camera!! Specially with my first camera, the small, it was too slow for this kind of photography… Or a greater challenge!!
    I’m still impress about how much and variate wildlife do you have in California… Of course, California is huge (larger than many European countries!!!), but I find this fascinating!!

  4. Thanks Mercedes! I’m also challenged when shooting birds. I have an F4/300 mm that is really too heavy to handhold. I rest it on the window of the car! On my crop sensor it ranges out to about 450 mm. My friend shoots with a 600 mm and puts it on her crop sensor. My biggest problem is reaction time which hasn’t improved with age. Those birds have to be close and slow!! I do love living in California and its varied environments. Take care!

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