Archive for Photography

Queen of the Night Cactus New Branches

New Branches

The queen of the night cactus (Peniocereus Greggii ) on the east side of our driveway has branched out a bit. The two new branches in the photo above started last summer and look to be doing well. We monitor this cactus more since it is in plain sight from the driveway.

This cactus has bloomed with at least one flower over the past two years. We’re hoping to have at least one flower, and maybe more, this coming summer. Click on the image to enlarge.

I took this zoomed close-up of the branches using my DSLR Camera with the new EF-S 18-135mm lens. I shot the photo with the following camera settings:

Model - Canon EOS REBEL SL1
Date Time - 2019:02:28 16:40:11
Copyright - COPYRIGHT (C) VERNABOB.COM
Exposure Time - 1/250 seconds
F Number - 20
Exposure Program - Aperture priority
ISO Speed - 640
Shutter Speed - 1/256 seconds
Focal Length - 135 mm

The focus stayed sharp for the depth of field needed. Love the new lens.

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Local Mountains Snow

Local Mountains Snow

Since last Wednesday, we have had colder temperatures in our area. Just five years ago on this date, we were wearing shorts, but not this year. Both of us got new winter jackets just to keep warm here in “Dry Heat” Arizona. LOL

I took this photo today of to Weaver mountain range just fifteen miles north of town. The mountains have a nice coat of snow, but it won’t last very long since this is Arizona and the weather will undoubtedly become more spring like over the next few days.

As I said, we have had some unusually cold (even for winter) days. Our neighbor, who teaches school in nearby Congress came home early a couple of days ago and reported a foot of snow had closed her school for the day. Her car was caked with still fresh snow when she drove into the area.

Click on the image to enlarge.

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Tiny Pink Cactus Flowers and an Arizona Sunset

Tiny Pink Flowers

This little barrel cactus is in the xeriscape area in front of the garage wall east of the courtyard. I think it must be happy here since it has this ring of tiny pink flowers around its top.

Sundown

Today was mostly cloudy, but still pretty warm. Our high temperature was nowhere near record for this date, but we’ll take 74° anytime in January. I photographed the clouds as lighted up by the setting sun.

Click on either image to enlarge.

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Sunset Ripples

Sunset Ripples

When we went out to look at the sunset this evening, Verna took this photo of these rippling altocumulus clouds to the southeast of our house. This is an unusual cloud formation that generally occurs in advance of an approaching storm front. Sure enough, the National Weather Service is forecasting a 40 percent chance of rain tonight.

The clouds are formed when a wave is generated aloft; that is, the air mass is rising and falling in a wave-like motion as it is carried along in the upper atmosphere. The water vapor in the air condenses into droplets or ice crystals when it rises and evaporates again when it comes down below into warmer air.

Regardless of all the nerdy science involved in explaining the phenomenon, it sure is pretty to see up there. Click on the image to enlarge.

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Live Tree Ornaments

Goldfinch Cardinal

We had one of our spring-like winter days today with mostly clear skies and warmish (not as warm as we like) temperatures. While eating breakfast we could see the birds frequenting the feeders on the little hill behind the RV driveway.

I speculated that some of the birds would hang around after breakfast, so I headed out there with my camera and 300mm zoom lens. I managed to get several shots of the little flying critters including the two above. On the left is a goldfinch and on the right is a cardinal, both males of their respective species. They were both briefly “decorations” on the mesquite tree up there. Click on either image to enlarge.

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More Backyard Birds

Curve Billed Thrasher

Today, like many Mondays, I went up on the knoll behind the house and replenished the bird feeders. We have a Seed Block Cage, a Bell Holder, two large Nyjer Seed Finch Feeders, a smaller Finch Feeder and a Songbird Seed Feeder.

After finishing up on the knoll, the usual avian customers came out to enjoy the fruits of our labor. I got out my Canon EOS with the 300mm zoom lens and captured these three up near the feeders. Top: Curve Billed Thrasher, Bottom Left: A Male Gambel’s Quail and Bottom Right: Abert’s Towhee. The latter of the three, we don’t see very often, but it was availing itself of some of the songbird seeds after it posed in a mesquite tree. Click on any image to enlarge.

Gambel’s Quail Abert’s Towhee

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Rainbow’s End

Rainbow’s End

Yesterday, we had some badly-needed rainfall here in the desert. It didn’t reach flash flood stage, but we got a fair amount of rain.

As the main part of the rain clouds passed to the northeast, conditions were perfect for a full double rainbow, horizon to horizon. I positioned myself to capture this photo of our house with the rainbow seemingly ending on it. Click on the image to enlarge.

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