Sunday, December 11, 2011

National Wildlife contest award

The National Wildlife Federation held their annual photo contest this year and I won the ”Other Wildlife, professional” category. My image along with the other winning photos is published in the December/January 2012 issue of National Wildlife magazine. Images can also be viewed on their website click here  .  Congratulations to all the winners. The NWF main focus is to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for our children's future.

Cane Toad

Sunday, November 6, 2011

And the Winners are...

The Coastal Bend Wildlife Photo contest announced the winners for the 2010/2011 photo contest on November 5, 2011.  I was fortunate to win First Grand prize. With this win, I was glad to honor my ranch owner from the Twin Oaks,  Lon Cartwright who will be turning 90 very soon. He is a fascinating gentleman who truly loves his land and family (Claire Vaughn and Loncito Cartwright).  My good friends Bill and Sharon Draker were a very close second. I was very unsure who was going to take the top prize when I saw all the images. The Drakers shot on the Welder Wildlife Refuge, a wonderful ranch with great diversity.  Hector Astorga took third on the Fennessy Ranch with some amazing images.  Sally Crofutt and Mog were there from the Fennessy.  I shot on the Fennessy Ranch for the Images for Conservation Pro Tour back in 2008. They are wonderful people and do a magnificent job of manging their ranch. If you are ever in the area, you should check them out. Rounding out the top five were James Fuller on his family's ranch and Dean Johnstone on his family ranch.  I was quite impressed with their images. The judge's favorite was a pair of fighting rattlers shot by Charlie Spiekerman. It was quite spectacular.  Overall I thought all the images were fabulous and wish some of them were mine!  The event was wonderful as well.  I think there must have been between 250 to 300 people there.  The Coastal Bend did a great job organizing the whole event.  This year's book will be dedicated to Luther Young who recently passed away unexpectedly this year.  He was the husband of Patti Young who is the director of the Coastal Bend Wildlife Contest.
I posted my 1st place category winners here. To see my whole entry please check out my portfolio here.

Barn Owls

Barn Swallow

Audubon's Oriole

Black-chinned Hummingbird

Northern Mockingbird and Golden-fronted Woodpecker

Black-necked Stilts

Green Jay

Grey Fox


Red Wasp

Running Spider

Robber Fly

Eastern Amberwing

Rain Lilies

Texas Dandelion


Monday, October 31, 2011

Nature's Best Award

I am proud to announce that my image of the jumping Cane Toad received a Highly Honored in this Year's Windland Smith Rice International Awards from Nature's Best Photography.

Cane Toad Jumping

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Coast Trip

I was in Port Aransas the beginning of October. I wanted to take advantage of the warm gulf waters, the latter part of bird migration and attend the "Meet the Judges" event for the Coastal Bend Wildlife Photo Contest. I was fortunate to enjoy all 3. My daughter Anna and wife Karen joined me for my little excursion.  We stayed on the beach and each morning I rose with the sun to take pictures.  One morning, a lone Long-billed Curlew was working the sandy beach areas for crabs; the curlew used its long bill to retrieve the crabs out of their holes.  The tide was generally low in the morning; unfortunately midday was the true low tide and the light was harsh. However, birdwatching was spectacular at that time because all the schools of little fish were concentrated between the sandbars making the birds go wild. Brown pelicans, terns, and seagulls were diving like crazy.  If you can, plan your trip when low tide is around daybreak or sunset to take advantage of the light.

At both Paradise Pond and the Birding Center, migrating birds were flocking because a cold front with violent storms blew through . The migrants included Wilson's Warblers and Nashville Warblers which both are more common at the coast during fall migration.

On Saturday night, we went to the Welder Wildlife Refuge to meet the judges for the 2011 Coastal Bend Wildlife Photo Contest. This year's judges were Larry Ditto, Karine Aigner and Mike Sloat. I teamed up the the Cartwright / Vaughn families on the Twin Oaks Ranch. The outside event was quite nice with cool weather, great company, beer and Texas Bar-B-Que. The judges apparently worked long hours to place all the images with lots of debates occurring. We will have to wait until November 5 to see the winning images. For more info about the judges or the contest click here. I will post my contest portfolio after the awards ceremony.

Long-billed Curlew
Snowy Egret in surf

Brown Pelicans

Brown Pelican

Brown Pelicans